Raipur, Dec 1 (IANS) A late charge by Rinku Singh, who blasted a 29-ball 46, and Jitesh Sharma, who hammered a 19-ball 35, helped India recover from a mid-innings collapse and scamper to 174/9 in 20 overs against Australia in the fourth T20I of the five-match series here on Friday.
Rinku and Jitesh raised 56 runs for the fifth wicket before India lost a few wickets towards the end of the innings and managed only 174.
After Australia skipper Matthew Wade won the toss and inserted India in to bat first, the hosts raised 50 runs in the sixth over with openers Yashasvi Jaiswal and Ruturaj Gaikwad going great guns at the Shaheed Veer Narayan Singh International Stadium here.
In a stadium that was reportedly facing power problems because of allegedly unpair electricity bills, Jaiswal struck six fours and a six in his 28-ball 37 before pacer Aaron Hardie extracted extra bounce with a cross-seam short delivery outside off to have the Indian batter pulling to Ben McDermott, running in from mid-on.
India lost two quick wickets as Shreyas Iyer (8) and Suryakumar Yadav (1) departed, falling victim to Tanveer Sangha and Ben Dwarshuis respectively.
Ruturaj Gaikwad, who struck 32 off 28 balls hitting three fours and a six, was caught by Dwarshuis off Sangha as he attempted to go big over extra cover but edged it to short third man.
India were reduced to 111/4 in the 14th over before Rinku and Jitesh Sharma came together to raise a quick-fire half-century that propped up the Indian innings. Rinku slammed four boundaries and two maximums while Jitesh struck one four and three sixes as they propelled India to 167 before the wicketkeeper batter was out, caught by Travis Head off Dwarshuis.
Trying to raise as many runs as possible, India lost five wickets in the last two overs starting from the fourth ball of the 19th over. Jitesh Sharma (18.4), Axar Patel (18.5) and Rinku Singh (19.1) got out over three consecutive balls spread across two overs while Deepak Chahar (19.3) and Ravi Bishnoi (19.6) also fell in the final over.
For Australia, Ben Dwarshuis claimed 3-40 while Jason Behrendorff (2-32) and Tanveer Sangha (2-30) claimed a couple of wickets apiece.
India will now have to come up with a superb effort with the ball to prevent Australia from levelling the series 2-2 going into the fifth and final T20I at Bengaluru.
India 174/9 in 20 overs (Rinku Singh 45, Yashasvi Jaiswal (37), Jitesh Sharma 35, Ruturaj Gaikwad 32; Ben Dwarshuis 3-40, Jason Behrendorff 2-32, Tanveer Sangha 2-30) against Australia.