India-Australia 5th ODI called off

Cuttack, Oct 26 (IANS) The fifth One-Day International (ODI) of the seven-match series between India and Australia here Saturday has been called off due to a wet outfield.

There was hope among the cricket enthusiasts with the sun shining bright Saturday morning but after the 11 a.m. inspection done by match referee Roshan Mahanama the outfield was deemed to be too wet for play.

Cyclone Phailin, a tropical storm from the Bay of Bengal, triggered heavy rain in the southeastern Indian coast.

Phailin, which made landfall Oct 12 near Gopalpur in Ganjam district, brought heavy rain and caused floods leaving a trail of destruction in several districts of Odisha.

The Odisha Cricket Association released a statement Friday which said that the ground was "completely water-logged and the chances of its drying up are extremely remote".

The association had employed helicopters to dry the ground, but it did not prove too effective.

"The operators of the helicopters visited the ground and expressed that they could dry the pitch but were unable to remove the mud that has accumulated through the playing area," the statement said.

The fourth ODI in Ranchi was also abandoned midway after heavy rain.

Australia lead the the series 2-1 with two games remaining in Nagpur (Oct 30) and Bangalore (Nov 2).

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