Australia arrived on Indian shores in February 2017 to defend the Border-Gavaskar Trophy. In a high-voltage series, they managed to win the first Test at Pune but went on to lose the series 1-2. Six months later, they came back to complete the tour and play a five-match ODI series. Controversies didn’t make headlines this time but India’s domination did.

Australia were anyway going to struggle without their ace pacers Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood. But India made their stay even more difficult by continuing to produce top notch performances. With the win at Nagpur, India sealed the series 4-1. Returning the favours of 2015-16 series, India beat Australia for the first time by this big margin. In doing so, they also climbed to the top spot in ICC ODI Rankings.

Here is the final ODI in pictures:

The Nagpur track

MS Dhoni inspects the Nagpur pitch ahead of the India-Australia 5th ODI (Image courtesy: IANS)
MS Dhoni inspects the Nagpur pitch ahead of the India-Australia 5th ODI (Image courtesy: IANS)

The Nagpur track stormed a lot of controversies in the recent past. It was rated ‘poor’ by ICC after the India-South Africa Test in 2015. The relaid surface was expected to behave differently. The curator said it had plenty for batters and the bowlers.

Warner vs Bhuvi

David Warner edges one in the first over off Bhuvneshwar Kumar (Image courtesy: IANS)
David Warner edges one in the first over off Bhuvneshwar Kumar (Image courtesy: IANS)

Australia elected to bat. It was again going to be David Warner vs Bhuvneshwar Kumar. Bhuvi induced an edge early in the first over. It just fell short of Rohit Sharma, manning the second slip. Warner was extra cautious from thereon and went on to craft a fine fifty.

‘Finch-hitting’

Aaron Finch displayed fine form and gave Australia a brisk start. (Image courtesy: IANS)
Aaron Finch displayed fine form and gave Australia a brisk start. (Image courtesy: IANS)

Aaron Finch continued with his fine form. He looked in ominous touch and stroked a 26-ball 32 before Hardik Pandya provided India the crucial breakthrough.

Nagpur crowd

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Nagpur crowd (Image courtesy: IANS)

Nagpur never fails to disappoint when it comes to attendance. The crowd came in numbers on this Sunday to root for their fans. They got plenty of entertainment from both sides.

The man with golden arms

Kedav Jadhav sends back Steven Smith for 16 (Image courtesy: IANS)
Kedav Jadhav sends back Steven Smith for 16 (Image courtesy: IANS)

Kedar Jadhav was surprisingly introduced into the attack ahead of the regular spinner Akshar Patel. Jadhav has made it a habit to provide breakthroughs. He got the priced scalp of the Australian skipper Steven Smith for 16. Australia were in the back foot. For the first time in his ODI career, he finished his quota of 10 overs and gave away only 48.

Akshar’s day out

Akshar Patel was the pick of the bowlers, bagging 3 for 38. Peter Handscomb was the first of his wickets. He perished trying to play a slog sweep. (Image courtesy: IANS)
Akshar Patel was the pick of the bowlers, bagging 3 for 38. Peter Handscomb was the first of his wickets. He perished trying to play a slog sweep. (Image courtesy: IANS)

Injured for the first 3 games, Akshar Patel did not have a great outing at Bengaluru. However, the all-rounder made amends and picked 3 crucial Australian wickets.

David Warner fell for 53. The pressure was building on him and he failed to replicate the brilliance of Bengaluru. (Image courtesy: IANS)
David Warner fell for 53. The pressure was building on him and he failed to replicate the brilliance of Bengaluru. (Image courtesy: IANS)

Head-Stoinis mark recovery

Travis Head (right) and Marcus Stoinis contributed with important 40s that helped Australia to 243. They were at least short by 60 runs thanks to some brilliant death bowling from India (Image courtesy: AFP)
Travis Head (right) and Marcus Stoinis contributed with important 40s that helped Australia to 243. They were at least short by 60 runs thanks to some brilliant death bowling from India (Image courtesy: AFP)

Australia were struggling at 118 for 4 in the 25th over. Travis Head and Marcus Stoinis added 87 for the fifth wicket to mark Australia’s recovery. Indian bowlers, Bhuvi and Jasprit Bumrah in particular, were phenomenal at the death as Australia were restricted to 243 for 9 on a two-paced surface.

The openers seal it again

Indian openers registered another century stand. Both Rohit Sharma and Ajinkya Rahane continued with their form. Rahane slammed his 4th consecutive fifty (Image courtesy: AFP)
Indian openers registered another century stand. Both Rohit Sharma and Ajinkya Rahane continued with their form. Rahane slammed his 4th consecutive fifty (Image courtesy: AFP)

Rohit and Ajinkya Rahane added 124 for the first wicket. Rohit went on to score a match-winning hundred while Rahane supported well with 61. It was a true exhibition of brilliant stroke making.

Rohit Sharma, the ODI monster

Rohit Sharma slammed his 14th ODI ton and is now only behind Sachin Tendulkar's tally of 9 as most centuries for India against Australia. Rohit now has 6 hundreds against Australia (Image courtesy: AFP)
Rohit Sharma slammed his 14th ODI ton and is now only behind Sachin Tendulkar’s tally of 9 as most centuries for India against Australia. Rohit now has 6 hundreds against Australia (Image courtesy: AFP)

Rohit and Virat Kohli love batting with each other. They stitched 99 for the second wicket. Rohit went on to slam his 14th ODI century. He also completed 6,000 runs in ODIs and surpassed Hardik Pandya for most number of sixes in 2017. Rohit deservingly was awarded the Player of the Match.

The Manish Pandey’s touch

Manish Pandey may not have registered a fifty-plus score in this series but he smacked 2 back-to-back boundaries off James Faulkner to complete the 7-wicket victory for India. (Image courtesy: AFP)
Manish Pandey may not have registered a fifty-plus score in this series but he smacked 2 back-to-back boundaries off James Faulkner to complete the 7-wicket victory for India. (Image courtesy: AFP)

India were trailing 0-4 heading to Sydney in 2015-16. Manish Pandey’s brilliant century helped India to a famous win to make it 1-4 for India. Pandey may not have registered a fifty-plus score in this series but it was off his blade that the winning runs came. Pandey smacked back-to-back fours off James Faulkner to take India home with 43 balls to spare.

HARDIK PANDYA: The superstar we will keep hearing about!

Hardik Pandya won the Man of the Series for his all-round brilliance (Image courtesy: AFP)
Hardik Pandya won the Man of the Series for his all-round brilliance (Image courtesy: AFP)

Hardik Pandya was awarded the Man of the Series. He scored 222 runs at over 55 and a strike rate in excess of 108. He also chipped in with 6 wickets at 31.33.

No.1 ODI side

Here, the No.1 ODI side (Image courtesy: AFP)
Here, the No.1 ODI side (Image courtesy: AFP)

India with a rating of 120 are now the No.1 side in ODIs. They have been topping the charts for over a year in Test cricket. This win serves well for Indian cricket.