Warner, Finch set new record

The opening duo now hold the record for the highest opening partnership for Australia in ODIs as the team put on 334 for 5 in its 50 overs in the fourth ODI.

David Warner (right) and Aaron Finch pulverised India’s bowlers to submission.   -  K. Murali Kumar

It took 21 years and 21 days for Australia to break the record that two of its greatest batsmen — Goeff Marsh and David Boon — had set in Jaipur. In September 1986, they had put up an opening stand of 212 against India, and that innings went into the history books as the side’s highest-ever opening partnership in One-Day International.

But on Thursday, that good old record was broken by David Warner and Aaron Finch as they stitched a 231-run opening partnership against India at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium. Thanks to that historic feat, the Aussies reached 334 for 5 in an inconsequential fourth match of the series.

Series already settled in India’s favour, Australia opted to bat after winning the toss, and taking advantage of a rather lifeless Bengaluru wicket, David Warner hammered a knock of 124 in just 111 deliveries to make his 100th ODI more colourful and memorable. Crafted by 12 boundaries and four sixes, Warner toyed with the Indian bowlers, who looked under pressure in the absence of Kuldeep Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah. While the Indians struggled to find breakthroughs, Warner went on a rampage, pairing with Finch.

A centurion in Indore, Finch looked at his aggressive best throughout his knock of 94. At a time when his second consecutive century looked obvious, the big-hitter fell six short, and was caught by Hardik Pandya at the mid-on, off Umesh Yadav.

By then, Australia had already reached 231 runs, and it looked as there were indications of a really big score. The final score remains daunting, but somewhat underwhelming after the start.