Australia posted a testing total of 286 for 9 in the third and final ODI against India in Bengaluru on Sunday. After Australia lost both their in-form openers David Warner and captain Aaron Finch for just 46 runs on the board, Steve Smith stitched 127-run third-wicket stand with Marnus Labuschagne, who posted his first ODI half-century with 54 from 64 balls.
Soon after scoring a fifty, Marnus Labuschagne vanished courtesy Virat Kohli's exceptional catch as the batsman looked to play an expensive cover drive. With three wickets down, everyone was expecting Alex Carey to be at the crease but the Aussies sent speedster Mitchell Starc at No. 5 as a pinch hitter to tackle left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja's bowling and up the ante.
On the same, Fox Cricket tweeted a picture of Mitchell Starc with the caption, “Australia’s new No.5 is… Mitchell Starc.”
In reply to the tweet by Fox Cricket Alyssa Healy (Mitchell Starc's wife), who herself is a wicket keeper batsman, replied with a ‘facepalm emoji’, which left many Australian fans in splits. And, rightly so, Mitchell Starc’s stay on the field was pretty short-lived as he perished for a duck off just 2 balls off Ravindra Jadeja's bowling, while trying to slog one over the mid-wicket boundary.
🤦🏼♀️— Alyssa Healy (@ahealy77) January 19, 2020
Mitchell Starc, who is so often the star of the Aussie bowling line-up, was hit all over the park by Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli. He went wicketless in his 9 overs and gave away 66 runs. Mitchell Starc couldn't grab a wicket in the second ODI as well and finished the series with three wickets from three games at an average of 66.67.
India, after having lost the series opener, came back strongly to clinch the series 2-1. In the series decider at Bengaluru, while chasing 287, India registered a solid 7-wicket win. Rohit Sharma starred with the bat as he scored 119 while skipper Virat Kohli chipped in with 89 to see India home.
IMAGE COURTESY: MITCHELL STARC'S OFFICIAL INSTAGRAM HANDLE