SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australia skipper Steven Smith has stressed there will be no let up when they play the fifth and final one-day international against an Indian side staring at a series whitewash on Saturday.
The Australians stretched their one-day win streak to 18 matches after a stunning India collapse in the fourth one-day on Wednesday allowed the hosts to claim a 25-run victory.
Smith said he was pleased with his side’s displays and was keen to wrap up a 5-0 series sweep before the three-match Twenty20 series begins next week.
“We’ve played some very good cricket against them of late,” Smith said on Friday.
“We dominated them when they were out here last summer, we beat them in the World Cup semi-final and we’re up 4-0 so we’re in a good spot.
“Hopefully we can top it off tomorrow with a 5-0 whitewash.”
India have not beaten Australia in any format since 2013. The tourists looked like ending that barren run when they were on 277 for one, chasing 349 for victory, only to lose their last nine wickets for 46 runs in Canberra.
India’s chances of victory in Sydney on Saturday could be aided by the absence of Glenn Maxwell, who was struck on the knee during Wednesday’s win.
The all-rounder went on to hit a crucial quick fire 41 at the end of the Australian innings to help post a winning target.
“He might have had something with his hamstring as well,” Smith said of Maxwell’s ailments.
“We’ll wait and see how he pulls up and see how the team goes from there.”
The ODI series has seen the two sides score close to 2500 runs combined with little help for both the fast and spin bowlers.
The test matches against New Zealand and West Indies also saw the 500-run mark breached on several occasions and Smith said he was “disappointed” with the docile surfaces at home.
“It’d be nice if the wickets that traditionally have a little bit more pace and bounce in them, the WACA and Gabba, were able to bring back those characteristics,” Smith said.
“I’ve been a little bit disappointed with the way they’ve played throughout the whole summer in the two test matches against New Zealand on those respective pitches.
“The wickets didn’t have a great deal of pace and bounce to them which we naturally see. It’d be great if that was brought back. I think that’ll make it a little bit more even between bat and ball.”
(Writing by Patrick Johnston in Singapore; editing by Amlan Chakraborty)