Australian team celebrates
Australian team celebrates
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On Friday, Australia defeated India by 66 runs in the first One-day International at the Sydney Cricket Ground. With this victory, the Aussies have taken a 1-0 lead in the three-game series.

Australia scripted their highest ever total against India in an ODI match. The entire top-order barring Marcus Stoinis, recorded half-centuries to their names. Skipper Aaron Finch and batsman Steven Smith completed their respective centuries to set a whopping target of 374. Finch made 114 from 124 deliveries with the help of nine 4s and two 6s while Smith scored 105 off just 66 balls -- with 11x4s and four 6s -- as the hosts took heavy toll on hapless Indian bowlers who had no option to fall back on.

Also, Finch became the second-fastest Australian to score 5,000 ODI runs (126 innings, 11 more than Warner).

Leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal, meanwhile, was the most severely hit, going for 89 in his 10-over spell. He could pick just one wicket. Chahal's are the most number of runs conceded by an Indian spinner on ODIs, going worse than 85 that another leg-spinner, Piyush Chawla, conceded in his 10 overs against Pakistan in 2008.

Coming to bat, India lost their first three wickets inside the first 10 overs to lose momentum. Both Agarwal and fellow opener Shikhar Dhawan had given India a turbo-charged start with a 53-run opening stand in just over five overs. But then Hazlewood struck with three short-pitched deliveries to dent India's march, picking Mayank Agarwal, Virat Kohli, and Shreyas Iyer.

Though there was a rearguard action from Hardik Pandya, who got his highest ODI score (90 off 76 balls) and added 128 runs for the fifth wicket with opener Shikhar Dhawan (74 off 86), Australia's total of 374 for six wickets in 50 overs, their highest against India in one-dayers, proved too daunting. India finished at 308 for eight wickets in 50 overs.

Kohli and Co will prepare for an uphill battle when they face Australia in the second ODI at the SCG on Sunday, November 29.

(with IANS inputs)

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