India whitewashed Zimbabwe in the 3-match ODI series © AFP
India whitewashed Zimbabwe in the 3-match ODI series © AFP

After a close start, India completed a professional whitewashing of Zimbabwe in the three-match One-Day International (ODI) series. Though India managed an impressive score-line by the end, it was not a complete team performance. Shiamak Unwalla rates the Indian team out of 10.

1. Ajinkya Rahane, 5/10: Rahane had a good series as leader, but as a batsman left a lot to be desired. Rahane comes across as more MS Dhoni than Virat Kohli as captain, and did let the game drift at times. He promoted himself to open batting but could manage only one fifty and was guilty of throwing his wicket away more than once. SCORECARD: India vs Zimbabwe 2015, 3rd ODI at Harare

2. Murali Vijay, 5/10: One of India’s most dependable Test batsmen got another ODI lifeline in this series. Sadly, he did not grab hold of the chance and managed only 86 runs with one fifty. He too was guilty of throwing his wicket away.

3. Ambati Rayudu, 9/10: This was a coming-of-age tour for Rayudu, who played only the first two ODIs. He scored 165 runs with one century when India was in dire straits. Despite playing only two matches he emerged as India’s leading run-scorer in and was named Man of the Series. READ: India vs Zimbabwe 2015: Visitors face batting order conundrum

4. Robin Uthappa, 3/10: Uthappa was a bit unlucky for he batted low down the order in the first two matches. The first time he got to bat at the top he scored a good 31, but that was never going to be enough. He scored just 44 at 14.67. His wicketkeeping was far from flawless too.

5. Manoj Tiwary, 2/10: Any hope Tiwary had of making a full-time international comeback seem to have been dashed with this series. He could only manage 34 runs from three innings despite facing as many as 73 deliveries.

6. Kedar Jadhav, 7/10: One of the finds of the tournament for India (not that he’s a “find” as such), Jadhav had a couple of frugal games (he scored 21 in two innings) before coming into his own in the third ODI. He scored a wonderful 105 not out to rescue India from 82 for 4 to 276 for 5. He was a bit lucky though, getting dropped on 41. READ: Re-living Elton Chigumbura’s against-the-tide innings

7. Manish Pandey, 8/10: After having to wait on the sidelines for two games, Pandey finally got his chance in the final ODI and grabbed it with both hands. Pandey scored 71 off 86 on ODI debut, combining with Jadhav to add 144 for the fifth wicket.

8. Stuart Binny, 9/10: Rayudu might have got the Man of the Series award, but Binny certainly made a case for himself to win the award. He had a wonderful series with both bat and ball; he scored 120 runs —including a match-winning 77 in a close win — at an average of 60 and a strike rate of 120. He made contributions in each of the next two games as well. With ball he was the joint-highest wicket-taker with six wickets. On the whole, Binny was one player who will definitely make a stronger claim to be a permanent member of the ODI squad.

9. Harbhajan Singh, 7/10: ‘Bhajji’ had a good comeback series, taking four wickets in three games at 27.50 and an excellent economy rate of 3.66. However, with Akshar doing well as well it may be tough for Harbhajan to retain his spot once Ravichandran Ashwin returns.

10. Akshar Patel, 7/10: Akshar had a good tournament as well, taking five wickets at 24 and an economy rate of 4.50. He did not do much with the bat though.

11. Bhuvneshwar Kumar, 8/10: Bhuvneshwar was by far the best Indian pace bowler on display, taking five wickets at just 16 and going at a mere 3.07 runs per over — the best in the series. He got the ball to move around and frequently beat the bat, and decided the first match with an excellent last over.

12. Dhawal Kulkarni, 5/10: Kulkarni had an indifferent series, bowling without much penetration or pace. He took two wickets in two games at 49.50 and an economy rate of 5.50.

13. Mohit Sharma, 7/10: Like Pandey, Mohit did not get to play till the final ODI but did well. He took 2 for 33 from seven overs including the first and last wickets to fall in Zimbabwe’s innings.

Sandeep Sharma and Sanju Samson: Unrated

Unfortunately, Sandeep did not get to make his ODI debut, and therefore cannot be rated. He can get a chance in the T20Is though. The same may hold for Sanju Samson, who came in place of the injured Rayudu.

(Shiamak Unwalla, a reporter with CricketCountry, is a self-confessed Sci-Fi geek who loves cricket more than cricketers. His Twitter handle is @ShiamakUnwalla)