Australia’s 2019 and build up to the World Cup has started in perfect fashion following a 34-run win against India in the first ODI.
A batting masterclass under the SCG lights from white-ball gun Rohit Sharma couldn’t stop the hosts taking a small slice of revenge for its humbling Test series defeat, which came at the same venue less than a week ago.
With Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood on ice, 22-year-old Jhye Richardson (4-26) led an entirely different Australian pace attack that claimed three wickets inside the first four overs, from which India never fully recovered.
The win takes Australia just one more away from snapping a run of five consecutive bilateral ODI series defeats, and the timing couldn’t be better with the 2019 World Cup starting in May.
Jason Behrendorff (2-39) was on debut on Saturday and picked up his first ODI wicket inside his first ODI over, trapping Shikhar Dhawan in front for a golden duck.
Most of the 37,556 in attendance came to see Virat Kohli in action but he lasted just eight balls before he flicked off the pads straight to Marcus Stoinis who held onto the rocket at square leg.
Richardson was the man who claimed his wicket, and two balls later he had another. Ambati Rayudu (0) was also given lbw and took a review with him to leave India at 3-4 inside four overs.