Dominant India clinch ODI series 3-2 with 57-run win

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Bangalore: Rohit Sharma smashed his way into the record books with a stunning 209 as the Indian cricket team provided the perfect Diwali gift to the nation with a 57-run victory in the the series-deciding final ODI against Australia to clinch the rubber 3-2 here Saturday night.
 
The 26-year-old Sharma gave a breathtaking display to power India to an imposing 383 for six before the hosts bowled out Australia for 326 in 45.1 overs at the jam-packerd Chinnaswamy Stadium.
 
The immensely talented Sharma thus became only the third batsman in the history of ODI cricket after Virender Sehwag (219) and Sachin Tendulkar (200 no) to reach the coveted double ton.
 
Chasing a mammoth total, Australia made a spirited effort with all-rounder James Faulkner blasting a 73-ball 116, the fastest century by an Australian in ODIs. While Faulkner hit 11 fours and six over-boundaries, Glenn Maxwell pulverized the Indian bowlers on his way to a 22-ball 60 that contained seven sixes.
 
Staring at a heavy defeat at 138 for six, Faulkner played a blinder as Australia made a dramatic recovery to give their chase respectability. He was involved in a record ninth wicket stand of 115 runs with Clint McKay.
 
Earlier, enroute his 158-ball-209, Rohit created a world record by hitting as many as 16 sixes along with 12 fours. His effort bettered Shane Watson's previous best of 15 maximums against Bangladesh. Skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni (62) and Shikhar Dhawan (60) scored brisk half-centuries.
 
This was also the highest individual ODI score by any batsman against Australia in ODIs as well as being India's highest team total against the visitors. The last five overs produced an unbelievable 101 runs.
 
This is the first instance when India have won a seven-match ODI series against the Aussies.
 
While Rohit scored his first 100 off 114 balls, the next hundred came off only 42 deliveries. All the sixes were clean straight hits in the arc between deep extra-cover and deep mid-wicket. There was minimum muscle and maximum timing in each and every six that he hit.

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