Johnson, Gilchrist shine in 9-wkt win

Australia cantered home to a nine-wicket win in the fifth one-dayer at Vadodara on Thursday to take an unassailable 3-1 lead in the seven-match series.

updated: October 15, 2007 13:23 IST
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Australia cantered home to a nine-wicket win in the fifth one-dayer at Vadodara on Thursday to take an unassailable 3-1 lead in the seven-match series.

Mitchell Johnson was named Man of the Match.

Chasing 149, Australia were home with 24.1 overs to spare. Adam Gilchrist had a great day, pocketing six catches, being part of a run out, and then getting into some form with an unbeaten 79 from 77 deliveries.

Australia weren't chasing a mammoth total, so they could afford to take all the time in the world. The Aussie openers Mathew Hayden and Adam Gilchrist made steady progress, reaching the first fifty in the 12th over, before India got their first breakthrough.

Gilchrist and Hayden matched each other shot for shot, as the Indian new ball bowlers were treated with disdain. RP Singh though finally gave India something to smile about, dismissing danger man Hayden for 29.

With the fall of Hayden's wicket, Dhoni wasted no time in throwing the ball to Murali Kartik, who had bowled splendidly in the last ODI. Adam Gilchrist though wasn't going to be buoyed down, as he struck three sixes off the spinner's first over.

Earlier, Mitchell Johnson's first ever five-wicket haul shattered India as the hosts were skittled out for 148 in 39.4 overs after electing to bat. It was utter carnage for the Indians right from the word go, with Brett Lee and Johnson bowling impeccably with the new ball.

It was just three balls into the match before disaster struck for India as Sourav Ganguly walked back to the pavilion for a duck. A mis-understanding between the openers resulted in Ganguly being run-out, the score reading 5/1.

Not a single run was added to the score, as it became 5/2, with former captain Rahul Dravid registering a golden duck. Brett Lee trapped Dravid plumb in front on the very next delivery to reduce India to tatters even before the first over was completed.

This was the 5th time that Dravid has been dismised off the very first delivery that he has faced.

But that wasn't the end of India's troubles. Yuvraj Singh was sent back to the hut soon after with Gilchrist taking a stunner behind the stumps off an outside edge. India were jolted by three quick strikes and were reeling at 12/3.

Sachin Tendulkar played defiantly and struck some glorious drives to ease the pressure. But it was not too long before an iffy call by umpire Amish Saheba slumped India further. Robin Uthappa was given leg before wicket off Johnson for five runs even when it looked like the ball was going outside the line of impact.

Johnson was deathly lethal with the new ball, picking up the wickets of Yuvraj Singh, Robin Uthappa and MS Dhoni (4).

Though wickets fell like nine-pins around him, the man playing his 400th ODI - Sachin Tendulkar - looked in sublime touch. There were some absolutely splendid shots on display courtesy accurate timing and placement.

After Johnson and company tore through the Indian top and middle order, the old warhorse played a lonely knock, trying to consolidate the innings as best as he could.

Tendulkar and Irfan Pathan added 49 but that stand was snapped at a crucial time. It took a special delivery from Lee - his best ball of the day - to snare the little master for 47 runs.

Soon after, Murali Karthik was also caught behind with India just about scraping past the 100 mark with just one wicket in hand. Then the last two men - Zaheer Khan and RP Singh - put on 41 to get India up to 148.

Both sides fielded unchanged sides.

Sachin Tendulkar becames the second player after Sri Lanka's Sanath Jayasuriya to feature in 400 ODIs.


India: Sourav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar, Irfan Pathan, Robin Uthappa, Rahul Dravid, Yuvraj Singh, MS Dhoni, Harbhajan Singh, RP Singh, Murali Kartik, Zaheer Khan.

Australia: Adam Gilchrist (C), Nathan Bracken, Michael Clarke, Ricky Ponting, Mathew Hayden, Brad Hodge, Mitchel Johnson, Brett Lee, Andrew Symonds, Brad Hogg, James Hopes.