Steve Smith has stunned the cricket world with an extraordinary slips catch as Australia recorded their biggest-ever ODI win over India in terms of balls remaining. Mitchell Starc produced a masterclass with the ball and Mitchell Marsh went big with the bat to lift Australia to a crushing 10-wicket win over India in the second match of the series.
Starc took 5-53 off eight overs in Vizag as Australia skittled India for just 117 in 26 overs. Marsh then blasted six sixes and six fours in reply, making 66 not out off 36 balls as Australia chased down the target in just 11 overs.
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Travis Head made 51 not out off 30 balls as Australia registered their biggest-ever ODI win over India in regard to balls remaining. It was also their third-largest ODI victory in terms of overs to spare.
The Aussie record remains the 42.1 overs they had to spare in a nine-wicket win over the USA in Southampton in 2004, when the victory target was just 66. The win levelled the three-match series at 1-1 heading into Wednesday's finale in Chennai.
While Starc and Marsh were the stars of the match, Smith stole the show with a remarkable catch to dismiss Hardik Pandya. Smith dived full-length to his right to snare a brilliant one-handed catch after Pandya edged the ball towards the Aussie skipper at slip.
Sanjay Manjrekar suggested in commentary that Smith's grab could be the “catch of the century”, with former Aussie captain Aaron Finch responding: “It’s not far off." Finch added: “An absolute blinder from Steve Smith. Who needs three slips when you’ve got Steve Smith standing there?
“He’s been known over the years to take them one-handed beauties. Last game there was a lot that just got to his fingertips, but this one … straight into the hand. Almost catches it behind him – brilliant.”
Speaking after the match, Smith said: "I don't know about catch of the century. It was nice I held on today.
"I had a couple of opportunities in the last game that were quite similar and they were just out of reach. I couldn't get my hand quite around it, but I was fortunate I was able to do that today. It was a big wicket, Hardik's an unbelievable player, so it was nice to hang on to it."
Name Steve Smith and taking one handed unbelievable catches.
One of the best fielder in the world. pic.twitter.com/DctvOwXy1L
— CricketMAN2 (@ImTanujSingh) March 19, 2023
Steve Smith's acrobatic catches are aesthetic 🤩
📸: Disney + Hotstar pic.twitter.com/iFawjrEeYO
— CricTracker (@Cricketracker) March 19, 2023
Normal day in the office for Steve Smith. pic.twitter.com/kBXJmT0Ufw
— Johns. (@CricCrazyJohns) March 19, 2023
— Smriti Sharma (@SmritiSharma_) March 19, 2023
Only Steve Smith can do it so consistently
— Nazia Sheikh (@n_sheikh007) March 19, 2023
— sportsmofo79 (@sportsmofo1979) March 19, 2023
Steve Smith delighted after Australia's crushing ODI win
Smith said about Australia's victory: "It was a quick one – 37 overs for the game, you don't see that too often. I thought our bowlers were outstanding this afternoon. Mitchell Starc in particular with that new ball swinging it back down the line and putting them under early pressure.
"He complemented really well with the rest of our bowling group and it was a nice start to the day. It was one of those days when every time they nicked it, it went to hand. Fortunately we were on the right side of it.
"The way that Heady and Mitch went out and went after against the bowlers, put them under pressure early. When you're chasing 118 you can break the back of it pretty quickly. It was a really good day, and I'm really proud we managed to bounce back after the last game."
Starc's ninth five-wicket haul in ODIs takes him level with Brett Lee for the most-ever among Australians. Only Waqar Younis (13) and Muttiah Muralitharan (10) have more.
"I feel like my rhythm has been quite good for a few weeks now," Starc said. "And the last couple of nights I've got the ball to shape in the air and do a little bit off the wicket. It's feeling in a good place, and hopefully it will continue."
Most five-wicket hauls in ODI cricket:
Waqar Younis (13 in 262 matches)
Muttiah Muralitharan (10 in 350 matches)
Mitchell Starc (9 in 109 matches)
Brett Lee (9 in 221 matches)
Shahid Afridi (9 in 398 matches)
Australia's biggest-ever ODI wins on overs remaining:
42.1 overs - v USA in Southampton, 2004
40.4 overs - v West Indies in Perth, 2013
39 overs - v India in Vizag, 2023
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