In a dramatic turn of events, Australia clawed their way back into the ongoing five-match T20I series against India, securing a thrilling five-wicket victory in the third match played at Barsapara Cricket Stadium, Guwahati. Chasing a daunting target of 223, the Matthew Wade-led side rode on a sensational century from Glenn Maxwell (104* off 48 balls) to seal the win.
With a herculean task of 43 runs to get from the final 12 balls, Wade and Maxwell upped the ante, hammering Axar Patel for 22 runs in the penultimate over, followed by another 23 off Prasidh Krishna in the last over to script the second-highest successful chase for Australia in T20Is.
Despite the loss, India’s opener Ruturaj Gaikwad came to the defense of Krishna, who registered the most expensive bowling figures by an Indian (0/68, 4 overs) in T20Is, acknowledging the challenging conditions he faced.
“I don’t think so it’s a concern because it’s almost like you are bowling with a wet ball. And it’s really tough on them. In these kinds of conditions, 12 runs per over or even 13 or 14 runs per over is gettable, even while we are chasing, In the first game, how easily we managed to chase 210,” Ruturaj Gaikwad stated.
He further praised Maxwell’s remarkable innings, where he notched the joint-fastest hundred by an Australian in T20Is (47 balls) to guide Australia to victory.
“I think even Maxi batted really well. To win from a situation where they needed 100 from seven and a half hours and then 50 from 3 overs, I think it was a critical innings for him,” Ruturaj Gaikwad added.
Earlier in the innings, Gaikwad himself had played a stellar knock of 123* (57), laced with 13 fours and seven sixes. Notably, he became the first Indian batter to score a T20I hundred against Australia, helping his side post a formidable total of 222/3 in their allotted 20 overs.
The 26-year-old’s innings was in vain as Maxwell’s onslaught left the Indian bowlers shell-shocked. The series is now levelled at 1-1 with the fourth T20I scheduled to be played in Raipur on December 2.