Heroic Virat Kohli smashes ton to script stunning Indian win

After Shikhar Dhawan struck a run-a-ball 100, India chased down Australia's 350/6 in Nagpur to level seven-match series 2-2.

Updated: October 30, 2013 23:54 IST
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Master of chases Virat Kohli smashed a 61-ball century to fashion an astonishing six-wicket Indian victory after Shikhar Dhawan scored a run-a-ball century in the sixth ODI against Australia in Nagpur on Wednesday. En route, Kohli scored his fifth half-century on-the-trot as India levelled the seven-match series 2-2. The Cuttack and Ranchi ODIs were abandoned due to rain. The final match of the series will be played in Bangalore on November 2. (Jadeja takes 100 ODI wickets)

Chasing 351 for a win, India rode an opening stand of 178 runs between Dhawan (100 with 11x4s) and Rohit Sharma (79) to set up a scintillating chase. It was Kohli's heroics (115 with 18 fours and a six) that gave the Indian innings the acceleration it needed in the home stretch. Kohli scored his fifty off 31 balls, slamming eight boundaries and a six. Kohli produced 56 runs with Dhawan off 39 balls. (Scorecard) (Kohli made batting look easy: Dhoni)

India looked to be in good position when Mitchell Johnson (2/72) struck a double blow in the 43rd over to swing the game Australia's way. Suresh Raina (16) got a dubious caught-behind decision and Yuvraj Singh was bowled for zero as the Indian innings suddenly lose its rhythm. India needed 48 runs in the last five overs and with Kohli and skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni in the middle, victory wasn't impossible. Kohli was simply unstoppable as he smashed the ball to all parts of the park for his 17th ODI ton. With Dhoni (25 not out off 23 balls), he produced 61 runs for the fifth wicket as India raced to a stunning win with three balls to spare. (Match Highlights | Match pics)

Dhawan, who missed out on a coveted century by just five runs in the Jaipur ODI, was not to be denied at Nagpur. The left-hander struck his fourth ODI century after being dropped by Glenn Maxwell off James Faulkner on 19. Dhawan's 178-run stand with Sharma bettered the previous record (176 at Jaipur) of the highest opening partnership for India against Australia in ODIs. (Dhawan smashes 4th ODI ton)

Sharma and Dhawan started steadily but soon runs began to flow as the pair made the best use of the fielding restrictions. Once Dhawan settled down, he began to play shots all over the park. His appetite for big scores is well known, particularly against Australia, when he hit 187 on his Test debut in Mohali. Dhawan also completed 1000 runs in ODIs when he reached his hundred is his 24th ODI. It was the perfect response to the big total set by the Aussies in what was a must-win game for the home side. (Kohli smashes 17th ODI ton)

Earlier, after India invited the Australians to bat, Shane Watson and captain George Bailey smashed scintillating centuries as Australia put the listless Indian bowling attack to the sword to post an imposing 350 for 6. Burly Watson struck 13 fours and three sixes in making 102 off 94 balls while the in-form Bailey was equally impressive in scoring a career-best 156, his second ODI ton, in 115 balls. His brilliant innings contained half a dozen sixes and 13 fours. These two batsmen also compiled the second-highest third-wicket stand of 168 in ODIs against India to help the visitors record their fourth 300-plus total in the series. (Bailey, Watson smash Indian bowlers)

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