Cameron Green has proven his class as an opener and Matthew Wade came to Australia’s rescue yet again in a thrilling four-wicket victory over India in the first Twenty20 in Mohali.
- Australia beat India with four balls to spare, chasing down 208 to win
- Cameron Green scored 61 off 30 after being elevated to open, but he is not part of the World Cup squad
- Matthew Wade rescued Australia from a collapse after Green was dismissed
In reply to India’s 6-208, Green made the most of his first chance at opener by pounding 61 off 30 balls as Australia reached 1-109 off 10 overs.
Green’s departure sparked a collapse of 4-36 as India put the clamps on the run rate.
Australia needed 55 off the last 24 balls to secure an unlikely victory in the series opener, and Wade came to the party.
Wade, the hero from last year’s semi-final victory at the T20 World Cup, smashed an unbeaten 45 off 21 balls to get Australia over the line with four balls to spare.
His knock included six fours and two sixes at a strike rate of 214.
Plaudits for the victory must also go to Green, who produced a glorious knock to show selectors what they will be missing out on at next month’s T20 World Cup.
Green was a surprise omission from the T20 World Cup squad, but he did not let that affect him as he got Australia’s run chase off to a bumper start.
The 23-year-old smacked eight fours and four sixes to put the visitors on track for victory.
If Australia suffer an injury to one of their top-order stars leading up to the World Cup, Wade is backing Green to answer the SOS call.
“The plan was always for Green to open today,” Wade said.
“The coach and captain feel like that’s the best spot for him to find his feet at T20 level, and he showed tonight that it’s going to be the spot for him going forward for a while.
“One, two, three are the positions that if something went wrong he would probably come in and fill.
“Josh Inglis can fill spots from three to the middle order. We probably see Greeny as that top order player if something happens and we needed to pull him [in] for the World Cup.”
Green’s ability to adapt to the opening role and recover from ugly bowling figures showed he possesses maturity beyond his age.
The rising star finished with 1-46 off three overs with the ball — which included being hit for three consecutive sixes to finish India’s innings.
Those late heaves ensured India’s total was their highest T20 score against Australia.
As good as Green and Wade were, India were made to pay dearly for a substandard display in the field.
Green was dropped on 42, Steve Smith (35 off 24 balls) received a life on 19, while Wade was grassed on 23.
Earlier, Pat Cummins and Green bore the brunt of the damage as opener KL Rahul (55 off 35 balls), Suryakumar Yadav (46 off 25) and Hardik Pandya (71no off 30) provided the fireworks for India.
Test skipper Cummins finished the match with figures of 0-47 off four overs, while spinner Adam Zampa (0-36) and Green also struggled.
Pace duo Nathan Ellis (3-30) and Josh Hazlewood (2-39) fared better.