MELBOURNE, Jan 29: India recorded their first ever bilateral series triumph on Australian soil as they clinched the Twenty20 rubber by taking an unassailable 2-0 lead with a comprehensive 27-run victory in the second match, riding on an all-round show here today.
Put in to bat, India relied on brilliant innings by Rohit Sharma (60) and Virat Kohli (59), along with a useful 42 by opener Shikhar Dhawan, to post a formidable 184/3.
Defending the target, the Indian bowlers put up a fine collective effort to rip through Australia�s middle order and restrict the hosts to 157/8 in 20 overs.
The Indians thus took a 2-0 lead in the three-match series, which ends on Sunday in Sydney. This was India�s first ever bilateral series win Down Under. The Indians had earlier won a tri-series in 2007-08 and the Benson and Hedges World Championship in 1985.
The triumph is a remarkable turnaround for the Indians, who suffered a humiliating 1-4 debacle in the ODI series earlier.
In today�s match as well, it was a turnaround of sorts by the bowlers, who withstood the early onslaught to make good recovery.
Chasing 185, Australia got off to a rollicking start as Shaun Marsh (23) paired up with skipper Aaron Finch (74 runs, 48 balls, 8 fours, 2 sixes) at the top.
India opened with Ashish Nehra (0-34) and Jasprit Bumrah (2-37), but instead of rotating the bowlers at the beginning like in Adelaide, the two were persisted for the first six overs.
India: Rohit Sharma run out 60, Shikhar Dhawan c Lynn b Maxwell 42, Virat Kohli not out 59, MS Dhoni c Watson b Tye 14, Suresh Raina not out 0; Extras (LB-7, WD-1, NB-1) 9. Total (For 3 wickets in 20 overs) 184. Fall of wickets: 1-97, 2-143, 3-181. Bowling: Shane Watson 3-0-17-0, John Hastings 3-0-35-0, Scott Boland 4-0-30-0, James Faulkner 3-0-35-0, Andrew Tye 4-0-28-1, Nathan Lyon 1-0-15-0, Glenn Maxwell 2-0-17-1.
Australia: Aaron Finch run out 74, Shaun Marsh c Pandya b Ashwin 23, Chris Lynn c Dhoni b Pandya 2, Glenn Maxwell st Dhoni b Y Singh 1, S Watson c & b Jadeja 15, Mathew Wade not out 16, James Faulkner st Dhoni b Jadeja 10, John Hastings b Bumrah 4, Andrew Tye b Bumrah 4; Extras (B-1, LB-2, WD-5) 8. Total (FOR 8 wickets in 20 overs) 157. Fall of wickets: 1-94, 2-99, 3-101, 4-121, 5-124, 6-137, 7-152, 8-157. Bowling: Ashish Nehra 4-0-34-0, Jasprit Bumrah 4-0-37-2, Ravindra Jadeja 4-0-32-2, R Ashwin 4-0-27-1, Hardik Pandya 2-0-17-1, Yuvraj Singh 2-0-7-1. � PTI