India v Australia, 3rd ODI, Mohali October 19, 2013

Raina fails Johnson's short-ball examination

Plays of the day from the third ODI between India and Australia in Mohali

The controversy
Aaron Finch had provided another sturdy beginning when Vinay Kumar banged one short in the 11th over. Finch went for the pull, but could not get hold of it. There were two sounds as the ball seemed to snick his top edge before pinging his shoulder and lobbing towards point. Virat Kohli ran in, dived forward and plucked it inches from the ground. Even as Kohli celebrated, umpire C Shamsuddin remained unmoved. Kohli turned his attention to Finch now, imploring him to walk in characteristically colourful language. Finch was going nowhere.

The power
MS Dhoni went berserk at the death, and James Faulkner went for plenty. In the last over, Dhoni stayed back in the crease, targetting the straight boundaries, trying to get under full deliveries. The third ball of the over, the helicopter shot made an appearance, the ball disappeared over long-on and Mohali shouted hoarse. Next delivery, Dhoni flashed his arms again, and the ball went over long-off for six more.

The dismissal
Soon after Suresh Raina came in, Australia brought back Mitchell Johnson. And then began the expected short-ball examination for India's new No 4. Raina hopped, jabbed and missed. He tried hooking half-heartedly but could not put bat to ball at Johnson's extreme pace. When he did, off another weak attempt at a hook, he only edged to slip.

The repeat
Yuvraj Singh walked in on his home ground and walked back first ball, his dismissal a replay of the manner in which Johnson had dismissed him in the first ODI in Pune. Johnson banged it in short of a length. The ball pitched outside off and moved away. Yuvraj followed it instinctively, had a waft far away from the body and got a healthy edge through to the wicketkeeper.

The timing
Fresh from making the fastest hundred for an Indian in the previous game, Virat Kohli showed off his touch early in his innings. The fifth delivery he faced was a fast yorker outside off from Mitchell Johnson. Kohli calmly bent his knees in the crease and opened the face of the bat. The ball raced past point for four.

Abhishek Purohit is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Michael Ponnudurai on October 22, 2013, 6:10 GMT

    It is pathetic to see the writer using "Controversy" title on Aaron Finch incident. It would have been only fair if he had used the two wrong lbw decisions handed out to Aaron Finch and Shane Watson, but for which Aus would have won in 40 overs. ESPN Cricinfo, please publish this comment. It is high time there is a neutral editor team that edits such one sided views, lest ESPN Cricinfo becomes a site real cricket lovers do not care to visit or read

  • Ashok on October 20, 2013, 23:39 GMT

    I never heard of Umpire Shamsuddin. He made many mistakes. Besides the catch off Finch by Kohli, B. Kumar had Hughes plumb LBW which Shamsuddin turned down. He turned down 3 close calls from B.Kumar. In desperation Kumar changed ends. @superman121: The negative comments are against Ishant Sharma- not Rohit Sharma. Ishant has been wayward for many matches now, yet he finds his way into the XI. Also the fans are upset in losing this match when India was cruising to victory. Inability of Raina & Yuvraj to play good pace bowling was evident both in ODI 2 & ODI 3, especially when Dhoni thinks these are the 2 best #4 batsmen for India.

  • Dummy4 on October 20, 2013, 13:56 GMT

    What went wrong, Dhoni? Ashwin had one over left. Kohli is a great bat but why O why, does he get the ball? Yet again, 18 runs in an over and no wickets. @Superman121, Ishant has already been to Australia twice. First time as a 19 year old, not much was expected. Didn't get a lot of wickets but showed promise. Last time, he was battered on pitches tailor-made for fast bowling. He bowled straight & short, at around 130K, no swing or seam. Yuvraj has also been there and failed miserably, as he does on fast pitches. Raina too. VK also failed. Let's not tale the same failed people back to Australia. Not when a great like Pujara is not in the team. Also, Karthik can play overseas.

  • Dark on October 20, 2013, 13:42 GMT

    Thank you for pointing it out mate... But u have to agree with me when I say Raina's ODI econ is far better than the self appointed "spearhead of the indian fast bowling attack" Ishant Sharma.... :)

  • Ashok on October 20, 2013, 12:58 GMT

    My first play of the day was Dhoni's brilliant century which pulled India into the winning position. But I am reminded of the famous Einstien's Quote for a certain type of character: "Repeating the same blunders but expecting different results". Dhoni has often used Ishant Sharma in the "death overs" with disasterous results. He did it again for the nth time & what appeared to be India cruising to victory became a defeat! This is my second play of the day. What was hypocritical was Dhoni called for improvement of the "Death" bowling with the same Ishant Sharma in the XI & him being the root cause of problem!

  • Dummy4 on October 20, 2013, 10:55 GMT

    @Wolverine77, I agree with almost everything you say. India has one of the best ODI batting lineups in history, I mean the line up has to be good if it keeps the likes of Sehwag and Gambhir on the sidelines! but I just had a query about you labelling Raina as " One of the best ODI all-rounders" I hope you mean his all round skills are fielding and batting (which both are excellent) because 21 wickets at 49 runs per wicket and 5 runs an overdoes not qualify him to be a "bowling and batting" all rounder.

  • Daison on October 20, 2013, 7:53 GMT

    If this is the best Ishanth can give, India might as well play a rookie

  • Dark on October 20, 2013, 7:38 GMT

    Gosh! judging by all these negative comments from the Indian fans, I can imagine what sort of pressure those players must be having representing their country.. Indian team is playing good cricket and everyone can have a bad game or too... Fans need to realize that they can't win each and every game they play! Rohit Sharma was a hero coming in to this game and look at the comments he get after one bad game... Raina has won games for india single handedly in the past.. he is new to #4 position. give him some time to settle down...

    Don't blame bowlers, there nothing they can do in these batting friendly pitches... How can you blame ishant when the best Aussie attack was taken apart in the last game... Ishanth will do superbly well in Aussie conditions in the next WC. thats why Dhoni persists with him. He is an asset...

  • Dark on October 20, 2013, 7:21 GMT

    I really don't understand why indian fans blaming Raina & Rohith... Guys wake up! Rohith won a game almost single handedly couple of days back! and Raina is one of the best ODI all-rounders of the game... and afterall india scored 300 + for Christ sake! blame the bowlers not the batters!

  • Syed on October 20, 2013, 6:17 GMT

    The pitches made by indians are destroying their fast bowlers faster than it is making 'the next great batsman' As wasim akram said before when touring India why on earth would any fast bowler want to ball on these sorts of tracks... I don't blame ishant sharma I blame indian cricket structure. Had Ishant Sharma been on any other side he would be a ace bowler with his height and pace, however there's no way he can find rhythm on these batting paradise's. India needs to smell the fresh air and see that is not all about chasing batting records, I think with the way things are going Ishant should ask to be promoted to #3 on batting to prove he too can easily score 100's on these tracks.

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