A rethink over a winning total in ODIs is needed, according to MS Dhoni, with the Indian skipper saying 350 now looks like the new 280, after India romped to a stunning six-wicket win over Australia in the sixth one-day international in Nagpur.
BCCI Official Website
India batsman Virat Kohli celebrates reaching his century against Australia
Led by a blistering hundred from Virat Kohli, India chased down Australia's total of 350 for six with three balls to spare to tie the seven-match series at 2-2.
The 351 chase was the second time that India have hauled down a target of over 350 in this series and Dhoni believes teams might need to reassess what constitutes a winning total with only four fielders allowed outside the circle.
"I think it is something we need to think about," Dhoni said at the presentation ceremony. "Is 350 the new 280, 290 or 300? With the new bowlers they are mostly getting smashed. Even the fast bowlers are bowling with their third man up and fine leg up.
"Not sure where it is going but if we are chasing like this it is not going to be good for the long-term health of the game. Only seeing boundaries and sixes for seven hours.
Dhoni praised all three batsmen that scored half-centuries or more for India, with Shikhar Dhawan making 100, while Rohit Sharma finished with 79 as India made a strong start before Kohli (115 not out) took over in style.
"We knew a bit of dew will come later, and now it is slightly easy as we can break down the game at intervals," Dhoni added. "We can evaluate after the 30-over mark as to what we need to do and what we can achieve.
"I think Shikhar and Rohit batted really well, and Shikhar got a century, but for Rohit it was one of those days when you can't find the gaps and he absorbed the pressure so well.
"I think Virat was brilliant, the reason being that as the ball got old he was counterattacking and maintaining a good position when going for the big shots.
"He made it look easy and the way he took pressure off the batsmen was amazing. It's always about taking the pressure off the new batsman."
Australia skipper George Bailey, who himself scored an outstanding 156, tipped his hat to Kohli and his blazing innings. "Virat played an unbelievable knock," Bailey said. "We made them hit really good shots [towards the end] and when a guy [Kohli] is batting that well that is all you can do."
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