Like all good things, India’s dream run in the World Cup 2015 finally came to an end on Thursday, 26th March, in the semi-final against hosts Australia. In a contest of equals, Australia appeared a hungrier for the win while Indians looked in a bit of a rush in their chase, which ultimately became the difference between the two sides.
Australia winning a crucial toss did the obvious on the SCG pitch by electing to bat first. Apart from the early loss of David Warner (12), Australian batsmen dominated Indian bowlers from early on. Aaron Finch’s watchful knock (81) combined with a Steve Smith’s handsome century (115) and sparkling cameos in the slog overs by James Faulkner and Mitchell Johnson rocketed Australia’s total to 328/7.
The Indian chase begun at a good rate, however, keeping pace with the escalating run-rate consumed most of the batsmen. Once the opening partnership was breached, Rohit Sharma (34) did not take long to join Shikhar Dhawan (45) back in the pavilion. Favourite to produced a match-winning knock in the big contest, Virat Kohli, too cut a sorry figure with just one run to his name.
However, Ajinkya Rahane (44) and MS Dhoni (65) tried to do the repair work but the damage was beyond control once both of them departed. Defending champions India have thus bowed out of the tournament.