Long way to go to become India's greatest captain:Kohli

Michael Clarke

David Warner hit a splendid century in his 100th ODI as Australia put up a commanding total of 334 for five against India in the penultimate encounter of the five-match series, in Bengaluru on Thursday.

India openers Rohit Sharma and Ajinkya Rahane had set up a flawless platform in Bengaluru with a second straight century partnership but the middle-order could not capitalise on that.

Warner scored a blazing 124 following a 231-run opening stand with Aaron Finch (94), to guide the visitors to 5-334.

India made a good start as Ajinkya Rahane (53 off 66 balls) and Rohit Sharma (65 off 55 balls) put on 106 runs for the opening wicket.

But Travis Head and Peter Handscomb forged a 63-run fourth-wicket partnership to halt the Indian fightback with some intelligent batting. Without any other option, Rohit had to run back to the non-strikers end where it was too late to him to make it before the Australians took the bails off.

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Among the three changes India made for the fourth ODI versus Australia was to rest in-form pacers Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah and play Umesh Yadav and Mohammed Shami.

But after Sharma and Rahane went back home, the Indian skipper also followed the trail soon enough as he failed to deliver.

When all of us had gotten out, when Hardik and Kedar were batting, we thought this was the ideal situation for them to understand how the game can be taken till the end. They were in a good position for the longest time before they succumbed to the pressure and couldn't get over the line. Wickets fell in a flurry and Australia successfully defended their formidable score. David Warner and Steve Smith rushed from point and cover to pick up the ball, and perhaps to give Kedar a sense of situation he had just walked into.

The series result now stands at 3-1 to India's favour, who already clinched the series in the previous match. All three bowlers, Mohammad Shami, Umesh Yadav and Axar Patel, proved expensive in their first game of the series but it was not entirely their fault that India ended up on the losing side. Interestingly, all the four wickets came off deliveries that kept low after being bowled short or slow. Getting to play in India, and play my 100th ODI, is pretty special.

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