In an astounding show of strength, talent and batting prowess, Australian batsmen Shane Watson and George Bailey hit centuries to power Australia to a commanding position in the sixth ODI vs India, reaching a mammoth 350/6.
His Test credentials have been questioned time and time again, but there is no doubting Shane Watson's limited-overs skills. He proved his mettle in the 50-over game once again, smashing a 94-ball 102 as the Australia batsmen overpowered India in the 6th ODI in Nagpur. The Aussies lead the seven-match series 2-1 after washouts at Cuttack and Ranchi.
Put into bat, Australia lost openers Phil Hughes and Aaron Finch without many on the board, but Watson and his skipper Bailey ensured that the wickets would be mere blots on the Aussie onslaught. The duo produced 168 runs for the third wicket that gave the visitors a firm grip on the proceedings. Watson was out in the 35th over with Australia at 213/3.
The Indians thought they had got rid of Watson in the 17th over when he was on 25. The 32-year-old was caught by Rohit Shamra at cover but replay's showed that Ravindra Jadeja had overstepped while bowling. The life-line would be disastrous as he pummeled the Indian spinners without let-up.
Bailey, on the other hand, continued his fine form throughout the series. Coming into bat in the 12th over, with the vistors at 45/2, Bailey did what he does best - first steadying the ship, then initiating the onslaught. During his 84-ball century Bailey smashed 10 boundaries and 2 sixes. He also went past 350 runs in the series, which makes him the tournament's highest scorer by far. He was finally dismissed in the final over of the innings for a wonderful 156.
The 31-year-old Tasmanian also now holds the record for the maximum runs in a bilateral series b a captain. He went past AB de Villiers (367) with an ODI still to go.
In a must-win game for India, Watson and Bailey have seemingly taken the game away from the hosts. With the Ashes not too far away, England too will be watching with wary eyes.