Batters, Axar shine as India win 4th T20I against Australia to clinch series

Tags: Australia tour of India 2023., India vs Australia, 4th T20I at Nagpur, Dec 01, 2023, India, Australia, Axar Rajeshbhai Patel

Published on: Dec 02, 2023

Scorecard | Commentary | Graphs

India beat Australia by 20 runs in the 4th T20I at the Shaheed Veer Narayan Singh International Stadium in Raipur on Friday, December 1. With the triumph, the Men in Blue clinched the five-match series 3-1. Batting first after losing the toss, India put up 174/9 on the board and then restricted Australia to 154/7.

The hosts got off to a great start with the willow as the openers added 50 in the powerplay. Yashasvi Jaiswal (37 off 28) dominated the opening partnership. He was also the first wicket to fall, mistiming an attempted pull stroke off Aaron Hardie.

India lost a couple of quick wickets after Jaiswal’s dismissal. Shreyas Iyer (8) was caught in the deep, trying to take on Tanveer Sangha (2/30). Captain Suryakumar Yadav (1) was then caught behind off Ben Dwarshuis (3/40). Ruturaj Gaikwad’s stay at the crease also ended for 32 off 28 as he too fell to Sangha.

Rinku Singh (46 off 29) and Jitesh Sharma (35 off 19) lifted India, adding 56 runs for the fifth wicket. The former carried on his great form, striking four fours and two sixes. Jitesh also impressed with his big-hitting, clubbing three sixes and a four.

In the chase, Australia got off to a blazing start, reaching 40/0 after three overs. Deepak Chahar went for 22 runs in the third over as Travis Head took a liking to his bowling. Leg-spinner Ravi Bishnoi (1/17), however, broke the stand, cleaning up Josh Philippe (8) with his first delivery as the batter went for an ill-advised sweep.

Axar Patel (3/16) then took center stage. He dismissed the dangerous Head for 31 off 16 as the World Cup hero got a leading edge to a slog sweep. Axar then cleaned up Hardie (8) and Ben McDermott (19) to leave Australia in trouble at 87/4.

Chahar returned to claim the wickets of Tim David (19) and Matthew Short (22). Australian skipper Matthew Wade remained unbeaten on 36 off 23 as the visitors reduced the margin of defeat to some extent.

Speaking after being named Player of the Match, Axar commented, “I was trying a lot of things when I was at home and it came out well today. I tried to stick to my strengths and wasn't really bothered even when I had gotten hit. Bowling stump-to-stump was the key to negate the dew factor. To stay attacking and be mentally strong is important as there is every chance to get hit in this format.”

--By A Cricket Correspondent

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