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‘Australia played better than us’ – Virat Kohli

India Australia Kohli
by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

Australia claimed their 1000th victory in international cricket with a 34-run triumph over India in the first of three ODIs at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

It was an assertive performance from the hosts, whose strong bowling display reduced India to 254-9 after posting 288 with the bat.

“We’re not very pleased with the way we played,” said India captain Virat Kohli after the game. “I think we were fine with the ball. That wicket was 300 plus par. I think we did well with the ball. We thought 288 was quite gettable.”

The Australia seamers, particular Jhye Richardson (4-26), were on the money from the word go. India lost their first three wickets in quick succession, as Shikhar Dhawan (0), Kohli (3) and Rayudu (0) were dismissed within the first four overs.

MS Dhoni (51) and Rohit Sharma (133) tried to steady the ship with a solid 137-run partnership, but could not take India past the finish line.

“Losing three wickets upfront is never good,” Kohli reflected. “I thought Rohit was outstanding and MS supported him but I thought we could have done better with the tempo of the game and we fell short.

“They took the game deep to give us a chance. MS got out at that stage. That put pressure on Rohit. One more good partnership and we would have got close.

“Australia were professional enough not to let us back in. I think we have to take it as a day when Australia played better than us.

“We’re not too stressed about results. I think days like these make you aware of things you have to work on as a team.”

Aaron Finch, the Australia skipper, was delighted with his team’s clinical performance and lavished praise on the young duo of Richardson and Jason Behrendorff.

“We knew that they’d try and take it deep and luckily we were able to take wickets and stem the flow,” Finch said. “We felt the wicket would slow up a bit so I thought it [the total] was par. The partnership between Khawaja and Marsh set us up and Pete Handscomb played a gem.

“Anytime you get a team three down early and three big guns it’s very important. I thought Jason handled his nerves brilliantly. And then the youngster Jhye is full of confidence and he’s got a bright future ahead of him. There’s always room to improve.”

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