Aussies rue missed chances after opening ODI defeat
AUSTRALIA was lamenting two missed catches by skipper Steve Smith after losing the opening One Day International against India in Chennai.
Usually the safest hands in world cricket, Smith put down two chances at slip, as the hosts built a score of 7-281 in a rain-shortened match.
Australia's eventual losing margin was 26 runs under the Duckworth-Lewis method after the visitors scored 9-137 from 21 overs.
Smith dropped Rohit Sharma when he was on four in the fifth over. India's vice-captain only added a further 24.
But, of more importance was the letting off of eventual man-of-the-match Hardik Pandya on 13. He went on to score 83 off 66 balls.
"You always want to take your catches," Smith said.
"Obviously I dropped one early and then there was the one that yorked me as well.
"Hardik Pandya's one I couldn't quite get my hands underneath of it unfortunately."
Glenn Maxwell did take a one- handed screamer at backward point which dismissed Virat Kohli four a duck.
The Aussies at one stage had the Indians 3-11, and then again in trouble at 5-87, before Pandya and MS Dhoni (77) added 118 runs for the sixth wicket.
Nathan Coulter-Nile (3-44) and Marcus Stoinis (2-54) were the best of the Aussie bowlers.
After rain stopped play, the Aussies were on the back foot in their chase from the outset, reeling at 4-35.
Maxwell provided a glimmer of hope (39 from 18 balls) but didn't receive enough support as they needed 161 from 21 overs.
"You don't really have a great deal of time to make things up when you need eight an over basically from ball one," Smith said.
"We've got to come back hard in a couple of days time," Smith said.
Australia's loss puts them 1-0 down ahead of Thursday's match in Kolkata, the second of five ODIs.