After getting a battering in the one-off Twenty20 a few days ago in Rajkot, it was assumed that the Indian bowlers will learn from their mistakes when they take on Australia in the first match of the seven-match ODI series at Pune. But that didn't happen as they were once again smacked by the visitors, and this time their batsmen didn't fire to hide the frailties.
Although India won the one-off T20 at Rajkot, their bowlers bled over 200 runs. In Pune as well, they were taken to the cleaners by the Aussie batsmen as the scored soared past the 300 mark. No partnership of note meant India never looked on course chasing a big target, thus losing the contest by a huge margin (72 runs).
Although Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Vinay Kumar started well, they lost their way in the latter overs. Both the bowlers picked up three wickets each in the T20 but went for plenty of runs at Pune. It was another unforgettable outing for Ishant Sharma, who once again disappointing with his line and length. He was taken for 56 runs in his seven overs. R Ashwin although picked up two wickets, at no point he looked threatening.
MS Dhoni was apparently unhappy the way his team performed on Sunday, saying they conceded too many runs at the end and failed to string any partnership of note. "There was some help for the bowlers, but we gave away too many runs. We had some good partnerships, but failed to convert them into bigger stands," Dhoni said after the match.
"I was a bit disappointed with some of the shot selections. We could have won had our shot selection been better. We lost too many wickets in the middle overs," the Indian skipper added.
Dhoni also conceded that unlike Australia, India don't have genuine pace bowlers who would have been effective on this surface as it offered more pace and bounce to fast bowlers. "It [batting] was slightly more difficult under the lights. Our pacers are not all that fast compared to them. It was a hit-the-deck sort of a surface," Dhoni said.
Barring the 71-run stand between Suresh Raina and Virat Kohli, India couldn't manage a decent partnership. And losing wickets at regular intervals didn't help the cause either.
But despite being disappointed Dhoni expressed confidence that his team will bounce back in the next match. "It is a long series and we'll look to get back well in the next match," he added.
Jaipur will hold the second match of the series on Wednesday.