Australia limited-overs skipper Aaron Finch, leading from the front, slammed his 17th ODI hundred to provide his side with a robust start against visitors India in the first game at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG). Finch opened the floodgates after a cautious start as he and fellow opener David Warner stitched a century opening stand to put Australia in a commanding position.
The experienced opening pair notched up 150 against a hapless Indian bowling unit. Mohammed Shami provided India with the breakthrough by dismissing Warner in the 28th over. The southpaw departed after scoring 69 off 76 deliveries.
Finch, however, stuck in the middle to keep the scoreboard ticking. With occasional boundaries and singles, he played a captain's knock and reached the three-figure mark in the 39th over bowled by Yuzvendra Chahal. The right-hander weaved his impressive knock around 7 fours and 2 sixes. Finch also became the second-fastest Australian batsman to score 5,000 runs in ODIs.
Earlier in the innings, Finch reached his 28th half-century in the 19th over. The Finch-Warner duo also became the first pair to build four 150+ partnerships against a team in the ODI format. To assist Finch after Warner's dismissal, Steve Smith hit a flurry of boundaries and scored a brisk half-century in the middle overs.
In the recently-concluded IPL 2020, Finch had a below-par season for the Virat Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) side. While opening the innings with youngster Devdutt Padikkal, Finch managed to score 268 runs in 12 games at an underwhelming average of 22.33.