Australia will have to wait to clinch their seven-match ODI series against India, with the fifth meeting in Cuttack abandoned without a ball bowled.
That means that the series remains frozen at 2-1, with the fourth ODI in Ranchi also called off Oct. 23. After a surprise opening win for the tourists, India claimed the second match. Australia put themselves in the driver's seat by winning the third match.
Now only two matches remain, with the final contests scheduled to take place in Nagpur Oct. 30 and Bangalore Nov. 2.
According to India's Zee News, umpires inspected the ground in Cuttack late in the morning following a break from the incessant five-day downpour that has hit the surrounding region of late, finding the outfield to be "soggy and damp." The officials followed their inspection by announcing the match would be abandoned.
The outlook for the match had been bleak long before the decision was made, with none of India or Australia's playing squads traveling to the venue.
Local fans also appeared to have given up hope on the fixture being honoured due to the recent adverse weather, with no ticket holders arriving at the stadium on the day to try and redeem their entries to the doomed ODI.
Considering the impressive crowds that had gathered to meet the teams on their arrival at the nearby airport and team hotels, their lack of enthusiasm for trying their luck says much about the conditions currently wracking Cuttack and its cricket ground.
The abandonment of this fifth ODI is something of a repeat of a similar outcome to another India-Australia clash from back in 1996, when a match was also washed out and called off without a ball having been bowled.
Cricket lovers will be hoping for far more sunshine in Nagpur and Bangalore as the world ODI No. 1 India try to assert their dominance on the format against a valiant and hardworking Australian side who have only lacked for quality in their gut-busting efforts against the hosts so far in the series.
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