India clinch T20 series against Australia with 20-run win in Raipur

T20 series

India secured the five-match T20 series against Australia with a 20-run victory in the fourth game at Shaheed Veer Narayan Singh International Stadium in Raipur on Friday. The hosts defended a modest total of 174 for 9, thanks to a brilliant bowling performance by Axar Patel, who took 3 for 16 in four overs.

T20 series

Rinku and Jitesh power India to 174

India, who were leading the series 2-1, opted to bat first after winning the toss. They lost their stand-in captain Suryakumar Yadav in the first over, caught behind off Jason Behrendorff. Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill then added 41 runs for the second wicket, before both fell in quick succession. Rohit was caught by Glenn Maxwell off Mitchell Starc for 21, while Gill was bowled by Ashton Agar for 23.

India were in trouble at 61 for 3 in the ninth over, but Rinku Singh and Jitesh Sharma came to the rescue with a blistering partnership of 87 runs in 8.2 overs. Rinku smashed six fours and three sixes in his 36-ball 56, while Jitesh hit four fours and two sixes in his 29-ball 40. The duo took the attack to the Australian bowlers, especially Starc, who conceded 51 runs in his four overs.

However, Australia fought back in the death overs, picking up six wickets for 26 runs. Agar, who finished with 3 for 28, dismissed both Rinku and Jitesh in the 18th over. Behrendorff, who took 2 for 21, removed Hardik Pandya and Axar Patel in the 19th over. Nathan Coulter-Nile and Adam Zampa also chipped in with a wicket each, as India were restricted to 174 for 9 in 20 overs.

Axar and Bumrah derail Australia’s chase

Australia’s chase got off to a shaky start, as they lost David Warner in the second over, caught by Rinku off Jasprit Bumrah for 4. Aaron Finch and Steve Smith then steadied the innings with a 47-run stand for the second wicket, before Finch was run out by a direct hit from Rinku for 25.

Smith and Maxwell then added 38 runs for the third wicket, but both fell in the space of three balls. Smith was caught by Rinku off Axar for 38, while Maxwell was stumped by Ishan Kishan off Yuzvendra Chahal for 18. Australia were 89 for 4 in the 12th over, and needed 86 runs from 48 balls.

The middle-order failed to deliver, as Marcus Stoinis, Alex Carey and Coulter-Nile all fell cheaply. Axar was the main tormentor, as he dismissed Stoinis and Carey in his third over. Bumrah also bowled a superb spell, taking 2 for 24 in four overs. He removed Coulter-Nile and Starc in the 18th over, leaving Australia 132 for 8.

The only resistance came from Cameron Green, who scored a valiant 52 off 21 balls, with four fours and four sixes. He added 22 runs with Agar for the ninth wicket, but it was too little too late. Agar was the last man out, caught by Rinku off Bhuvneshwar Kumar for 9. Australia were bowled out for 154 in 20 overs, giving India a 20-run win and a 3-1 series lead.

Player of the match: Axar Patel

Axar Patel was named the player of the match for his outstanding bowling performance. He took 3 for 16 in four overs, and also effected a run out. He was the most economical bowler for India, and also broke the crucial partnerships of Smith-Maxwell and Stoinis-Carey. He said:

I am very happy with my performance. I was bowling according to the situation and the pitch. I was trying to vary my pace and length, and also use the rough patches. I think we bowled really well as a unit, and defended a low total. I am enjoying my role in the team, and I am looking forward to the next game.

By Kane Wilson

Kane Wilson, founder of this news website, is a seasoned news editor renowned for his analytical skills and meticulous approach to storytelling. His journey in journalism began as a local reporter, and he quickly climbed the ranks due to his talent for unearthing compelling stories. Kane completed his Master’s degree in Media Studies from Northwestern University and spent several years in broadcast journalism prior to co-founding this platform. His dedication to delivering unbiased news and ability to present complex issues in an easily digestible format make him an influential voice in the industry.

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