A carbon copy of the first one-day international played out at the Brisbane Cricket Ground here on Friday, as India suffered a disappointingly familiar seven-wicket defeat in the second game of the VB Series. Having made 308 batting first, the touring side again failed to exert any pressure during the run chase as Australia overhauled the target with an over to spare.
Rohit Sharma scored a second hundred in four days, his 124 laying the foundation for an assault that never came, before India's below-par effort in the field saw Australia win at a canter. Ishant Sharma, bowling in an ODI for the first time since November 2014, endured a difficult day. He bowled eight wides – although his final figures of one for 60 from 10 overs were not terrible – and put down the simplest of catches at long-on, when Shaun Marsh was on 19. The batsman went on to make 71, allying with Aaron Finch (71) for a first-wicket stand of 145. That partnership essentially took India out of the game after an encouraging start, when the Australian total had been limited to 51 in the first 13 overs. Finch and Marsh went on the attack thereafter, adding 84 runs in the next 10 overs.
Marsh was dropped again on 69 by Manish Pandey (Ajinkya Rahane also missed a difficult chance offered by the same batsman) before he eventually fell. Steve Smith and George Bailey – those two again – added 78 runs for the third wicket to reduce the task to a formality. Bailey remained unbeaten on 76, his average against India now a mere 95.85 (from 10 matches).
Earlier, India won the toss and elected to bat first without hesitation. Much had been spoken of the taller bounce here and it was this that did for Shikhar Dhawan. Having driven Joel Paris through the covers for four, the left-hander slashed at the next ball as it rose steeply, edging behind. It was Paris's first wicket in international cricket, one that will leave India concerned about its opener.
Rohit did not seem entirely comfortable at first, edging a couple of deliveries – one flew over the slips while another sailed over the wicket-keeper's head and beyond the boundary – and playing and missing on several occasions. He settled down soon enough, as the nature of the pitch – another hassle-free batting strip – became quickly evident. Kane Richardson, a little wayward early in the afternoon, was clubbed for two sixes – one ball was short, the other full; both met with the same end.
At the other end, Virat Kohli unleashed a pair of ferocious drives through the offside as the partnership for the second wicket grew to 125. His run out for 59, was unfortunate, not just for the nature of the dismissal but its timing. Kohli pulled Scott Boland into the legside and having completed one run, set off for a second. Richardson ran across from backward square leg and fired an excellent throw that caught the batsman short.
Having been on the wrong side of an umpiring error in the opening game, India profited from one this time. On 89, Rohit edged Paris behind, but Mick Martell turned Australia's vociferous appeals down. Rohit soon completed his tenth ODI hundred – his fifth against Australia – with a single to third man. Ajinkya Rahane, meanwhile, had advanced almost unnoticed to his 14th one-day fifty, off 51 balls. But just when India may have hoped to hurry along, Rohit fell, in somewhat freakish fashion. A straight drive from Ajinkya Rahane was deflected onto the stumps at the non-striker's end by James Faulkner, the bowler, and Rohit was caught out of his crease. It set India back, triggering a collapse of six for 53 in the last 7.5 overs. After Rohit's dismissal, India managed only three more fours (to say nothing of sixes), as it finished on 308.
India: Rohit Sharma run out 124 (127b, 11x4, 3x6), Shikhar Dhawan c Wade b Paris 6 (4b, 1x4), Virat Kohli run out 59 (67b, 4x4), Ajinkya Rahane c Smith b Faulkner 89 (80b, 6x4, 1x6), M.S. Dhoni c Maxwell b Boland 11 (10b), Manish Pandey c Paris b Faulkner 6 (5b, 1x4), Ravindra Jadeja run out 5 (5b), R. Ashwin c Boland b Hastings 1 (2b), Umesh Yadav (not out) 0 (0b); Extras (w-7): 7; Total (for eight wickets in 50 overs): 308.
Fall of wickets: 1-9 (Dhawan), 2-134 (Kohli), 3-255 (Rohit), 4-276 (Dhoni), 5-298 (Rahane), 6-302 (Rohit), 7-306 (Ashwin), 8-308 (Jadeja).
Australia bowling: Joel Paris 8-0-40-1, Kane Richardson 8-1-61-0, John Hastings 8-0-46-1, Scott Boland 10-0-64-1, Glenn Maxwell 6-0-33-0, James Faulkner 10-0-64-2.
Australia: Aaron Finch c Rahane b Jadeja 71 (81b, 7x4, 1x6), Shaun Marsh c Kohli b Ishant 71 (84b, 5x4), Steve Smith b Yadav 46 (47b, 4x4), George Bailey (not out) 76 (58b, 6x4, 1x6), Glenn Maxwell (not out) 26 (25b, 1x4).
Fall of wickets: 1-145 (Finch), 2-166 (Marsh), 3-244 (Smith).
India bowling: Barinder Sran 9-1-51-0, Ishant Sharma 10-0-60-1, Umesh Yadav 10-0-74-1, Ravindra Jadeja 9-0-50-0, R. Ashwin 10-0-60-1, Virat Kohli 1-0-7-0.