Rohit Sharma believes MS Dhoni should bat at number four for India, differing with captain Virat Kohli's preference for Ambati Rayudu.

Opener Rohit scored 133 runs off 129 balls in the first ODI against Australia at the SCG on Saturday and produced a 137-run stand for the fourth wicket alongside Dhoni.

The duo helped lift the tourists after an abysmal start saw them reduced to 4-3, but the dismissal of Dhoni - who made his first ODI half-century since December 2017 - sapped their momentum and India fell to a 34-run loss.

Kohli expressed his contentment with having the "intelligent" Rayudu at the contentious position of four when West Indies toured India in October, but Rohit thinks a tweak might be needed ahead of the Cricket World Cup.

"Personally, I always feel that Dhoni batting at number four will be ideal for the team," said Rohit. "But we have got Ambati Rayudu who has done really well now at number four.

"It totally depends on what the captain and coach think about it. Personally, I would be happy if Dhoni bats at four.

"It is pretty simple with him and he does not complicate things. We spoke about building a partnership because it was crucial at that point.

"It was great to see him come and bat at number five. We lost three wickets, but he is keen to get those runs as well.

"Over the years, he has shown he is ready to bat anywhere for the team and score runs."

Rayudu wastefully used India's sole review when he was trapped leg before for a two-ball duck, meaning Dhoni was unable to challenge after he was given lbw to a Jason Behrendorff delivery that pitched well outside leg.

"It's always tricky, when to take it and when not. Rayudu thought the ball was drifting down leg and I thought the same. These things happen," said Rohit.

"You can't always be right. But it is important to use the DRS well and we've spoken a lot about it. It's such a split-second decision. We might have a chat in Adelaide but what's done is done."

Rohit Sharma's century proved in vain as India suffered a 34-run loss to Australia, who became the first team to register 1,000 wins in international cricket in the first ODI at the SCG on Saturday.

The India opener blasted a stunning 133 off 129 deliveries as the tourists chased a seemingly achievable target of 289 on a slow pitch for victory to follow up their 2-1 triumph in the four-match Test series.

Debutant Jason Behrendorff (2-39) and newcomer Jhye Richardson (4-26) had the tourists in trouble at 4-3 inside four overs, but MS Dhoni – who became the fifth batsman to reach 10,000 runs for India – and Rohit got them back on track with a 137-run union.

However, Ambati Rayudu (0) wasted a review that would have saved Dhoni had it been available, and India were unable to recover despite Rohit's best efforts.

Australia lost captain Aaron Finch (6) early when he was bowled through the gate by Bhuvneshwar Kumar (2-66), while Alex Carey (24) looked good before cutting Kuldeep Yadav (2-54) to Rohit at first slip to leave the hosts at 41-2.

Usman Khawaja (59) and Shaun Marsh (54) steadied the ship for the hosts, but it came at the expense of runs – their stand of 92 for the third wicket came from 111 deliveries.

Peter Handscomb (73 off 61 balls) and Marcus Stoinis (47 not out) – brought in ahead of Glenn Maxwell (11no) – picked up the pace as India struggled at the death in the absence of the rested Jasprit Bumrah, their final 10 overs went for 93 runs.

The hosts wasted a review on the fifth ball but Behrendorff had his maiden ODI wicket off the next deliver with Shikhar Dhawan going for a duck leg before.

Richardson struck twice in three deliveries to add Rayudu to the scalp of Virat Kohli (3), a poor review from the former meaning Dhoni had no option but to walk after being trapped lbw to a ball that replays showed pitched outside leg.

The former skipper and Rohit had stabilised the innings, but like Khawaja and Marsh they scored at a slow rate – their 137-run union came from 172 balls.

Rohit injected some urgency with three fours off one Peter Siddle over en route to his fourth ODI ton in Australia – more than any other batsman has managed against the team on their own soil – but Dinesh Karthik (12) and Jadeja (8) were unable to provide support.

A thunderous six into the second tier beyond deep midwicket saw Rohit keep up the threat of a late surge from India, but when he heaved Stoinis (2-66) to Maxwell the jig was up for the tourists.

Rohit Sharma will miss India's fourth and final Test against Australia in Sydney after returning home for the birth of his first child.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced on Monday that Rohit had travelled to Mumbai the previous day "to attend to his wife who has delivered a baby girl".

A statement on Twitter added: "The BCCI congratulates Rohit on the beginning of a new chapter in his life."

Rohit made an unbeaten 63 in the first innings of the third Test in Melbourne, which India won convincingly to move 2-1 up in the four-match series and retain the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.

He is set to return to Australia on January 8 to link up with India's one-day international squad.

The Sydney Test starts on January 3, with fit-again all-rounder Hardik Pandya a likely candidate to take Rohit's spot.

Jasprit Bumrah capitalised on his knowledge of bowling on slow pitches to help India seize control of the third Test against Australia in Melbourne.

A dramatic third day saw 15 wickets fall, Bumrah claiming 6-33 as the tourists backed up their first-innings total of 443-7 declared by bowling out their opponents for just 151.

The paceman's career-best figures secured a massive 292-run lead and while India slipped to 54-5 after opting not to enforce the follow-on, they are undoubtedly in the ascendency.

Bumrah admitted the sluggish nature of the MCG surface - only seven wickets fell across the first two days - made life tough, but the pace bowlers were aided by reverse swing, something he knows all about from back home.

"When we were bowling, the pitch was very slow. It has been a bit up and down, but mostly it remained down," he told the media.

"The ball was reversing a lot, and we were thinking of exploiting it as we have the experience of bowling in these conditions in the Ranji Trophy [India's first-class competition] back home.

"When we play on similar wickets back home the ball reverses, so you try to make the most of it.

"We were trying to use our experience in first-class cricket where we have bowled with reverse-swinging balls. That was the plan."

The 25-year-old took the pitch out of the equation with the dismissal of Shaun Marsh, who was deceived by a brilliant slower ball to be trapped lbw.

Bumrah revealed after play that Rohit Sharma - who captains the bowler for Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League - had suggested using the delivery.

"When I was bowling there, the wicket had become really slow and the ball had become soft. Nothing much was happening," he explained. 

"So, last ball before lunch, Rohit was there at mid-off and he told me: 'you can try a slow ball like you bowl in one-day cricket.' I thought: 'yeah, I could give it go. Nothing is really happening and maybe a slower ball there and some of their guys play with hard hands'.

"I wanted to try that, the execution was good on the day, [so] yeah, [I'm] really happy."

Despite their top-order collapse in the final session of Friday's play, including losing Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli without troubling the scorers, India reached stumps with a 346-run advantage.

Bumrah insisted they have no score in mind when it comes to setting Australia a fourth-innings target, as they are confident of bowling out their opponents again to go 2-1 up in the four-match series.

"We will add as many as we can, and we will back ourselves to defend the total," he said.

"Yes, we lost a few more wickets than we wanted to but we will try to add as many runs as we want to and, hopefully, when we come back in the next innings [to bowl], try to get them out as well."

Cheteshwar Pujara posted another century as India continued to grind down Australia in the third Test in Melbourne on Thursday.

Pujara (106) brought up his 17th Test hundred on another good day for batting at the MCG as Australia battled in hot weather.

Virat Kohli (82) and Rohit Sharma (63 not out) made half-centuries as India reached 443-7 before declaring late on day two on a flat pitch that was heavily criticised on Wednesday.

Marcus Harris and Aaron Finch got to stumps safely, albeit unconvincingly, as Australia finished the day 8-0.

India had resumed at 215-2 as Pujara and Kohli pushed them further ahead while Australia's bowlers toiled.

Australia were somewhat unfortunate as multiple edges went either side of fielders, before Pujara brought up three figures for the second time in the series with a beautiful drive off Nathan Lyon (1-110).

Kohli adopted a more aggressive approach after lunch, although it would be his undoing as he attacked an over of short-pitched bowling from Mitchell Starc (2-87).

The India captain, who needed treatment on a suspected back problem, picked out Finch at third man to end his 170-run partnership with Pujara.

Pujara quickly followed as a delivery from Pat Cummins (3-72) stayed low during a period in which the MCG pitch showed signs of variable bounce coming into play.

Rohit and Ajinkya Rahane were starting to frustrate Australia once more, and Lyon saw two good chances go begging, including substitute fielder Peter Siddle dropping a sitter off the former.

But the off-spinner also saw a ball stay low to trap Rahane lbw for 34 before India started to up the tempo - Rishabh Pant (39) and Ravindra Jadeja (4) joining Rohit in chasing quick runs until Kohli decided to declare.

India caused some problems and Harris was hit in the helmet, but the tourists were unable to find a breakthrough in the six overs before stumps.

India have been dealt a big blow on the eve of the second Test against Australia, with star spinner Ravichandran Ashwin and batsman Rohit Sharma ruled out.

Looking to take a 2-0 lead in the series, India announced on Thursday that the pair will miss the Perth clash due to abdominal and back injuries respectively.

Ashwin – who finished with figures of 6-149 as India prevailed by just 31 runs in a dramatic finale in Adelaide – suffered a left-side abdominal strain.

Meanwhile, big-hitting batsman Rohit jarred his back during the first Test, in which he only amassed 38 runs.

All-rounder Hanuma Vihari and paceman Umesh Yadav replace Ashwin and Rohit in the squad in Perth, where play gets underway on Friday.

 

India squad: Virat Kohli, Murali Vijay, KL Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Hanuma Vihari, Rishabh Pant, Ravindra Jadeja, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Umesh Yadav.

Cheteshwar Pujara claimed his first century on Australian soil to rescue India from a top-order collapse and leave honours even on day one of the opening Test.

Rohit Sharma says India must use the confidence gained from a comprehensive 3-0 Twenty20 triumph over West Indies for their upcoming trip to Australia.

Sunday's six-wicket win in Chennai completed the whitewash for Rohit's side, Shikhar Dhawan (92) and Rishabh Pant (58) leading India to victory off the last ball.

India have dominated the Windies tour, winning the Test, ODI and T20 series against Carlos Brathwaite's side.

And their performances in the shortest format are something captain Rohit hopes can help them when they face a three-match T20 series with Australia later this month.

"Overall, I am very happy with how we approached this T20 series," he told a media conference.

"There is a lot to take away, we ticked a lot of boxes and particularly I was very happy with the way we fielded.

"Australia is always challenging in terms of going out there and performing, every time you go there you are tested as a player and as a team. 

"We've got to be at our best, but when you win series like this and play like that you are high in confidence, so it's all about taking that confidence to Australia and doing what we've done as a team. 

"Australia will be a different ball game, but the things we've been doing as a team, we've got to keep doing that."

For Brathwaite a 3-0 reverse was embarrassing, but he was still happy with some aspects of West Indies' performances. 

"Team morale is up, what we are doing is finding the best way to use the resources we have," he said. 

"Three-love looks bad, and it's embarrassing for me as captain, but the performances and fight, that we came to together to use our resources to the best of our abilities, was the hallmark of our series for me."

Rohit Sharma struck his fourth international T20 century playing against the West Indies earlier this week.  The score made him the leading T20 century scorer of all.  Today our analysts will be tested on their knowledge of T20 International centuries.

Rohit Sharma created Twenty20 history as his unbeaten 111 helped India comfortably seal the three-match series against West Indies with a game to spare.

India wrapped up victory in their ODI series against West Indies with a comfortable nine-wicket win in the fifth and final match on Thursday.

Rohit Sharma and Ambati Rayudu made imperious centuries as India thrashed West Indies by 224 runs in Mumbai to move 2-1 ahead in their ODI series with one match to spare.

Rohit Sharma, Murali Vijay and Parthiv Patel have all been recalled to India's Test side for the four-match series against India, while MS Dhoni has been omitted from the Twenty20 team. 

Virat Kohli hailed the performance of Rohit Sharma as the pair put on a stunning 246-run stand for the second wicket in India's comprehensive ODI victory over West Indies on Sunday.

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