The Indian skipper hit four sixes and as many fours as he single-handedly helped India chase a 91 goal with four balls left in a match that was reduced to eight overs per side due to a wet outfield.
Scorecard | As it happened
Previously, Matthew Wade hit an unbeaten 20-ball 43 to blast Australia to a 90 for five.
Wade hit four boundaries and three towering sixes – all in the final off Harshal Patel (0/32) – while skipper Aaron Finch hit 31 out of 15 after Rohit invited Australia to bat in a match that was delayed by two-and-a-half hours.
Rohit chased the target and made his intent clear when he hit a six-strike spree, unleashing three monstrous hits on Josh Hazlewood in the opening to jump-start India’s chase.
WHAT. A. END! WHAT. A. WIN! 👏 👏@DineshKarthik goes 6 and 4 as #TeamIndia beats Australia in the second… https://t.co/xGPgCzdYLD
— BCCI (@BCCI) 1663954707000
The India opener then deposited Pat Cummins’ slower delivery (1/23 in 2 overs) in the stands before lifting Adam Zampa (3/16 in 2 overs) over long-off for one more max.
But the spinner came back to disrupt the stumps of KL Rahul (10), who was looking for a slog sweep.
Virat Kohli (11) then grabbed a border from Daniel Sams, before hitting one over Zampa’s head for another four.
(Photo by Pankaj Nangia/Getty Images)
However, the spinner won the battle of wits as his faster delivery defeated the Indian and drove the stumps out.
Zampa dealt a double blow when he caught Suryakumar Yadav (0) in the next ball and India dropped to 55 for 3 in 4.3 overs.
Unfazed by the fall of wickets, Rohit continued to go strong as he broke one over cover and then walked a short penalty when Sean Abbott gave up 11 runs.
Hardik Pandya scored a four off Cummins, but he couldn’t stay long as he skipped a hole to Finch in the seventh.
Designated finisher Dinesh Karthik then played his part to perfection, finishing off the remaining runs with a six and a four on Sams.
Previously, Australia looked to put on a show for the packed crowd at the VCA stadium, but Axar Patel (2/13 in 2 overs) snapped two wickets in an impressive spell to leave them at 31 for 3.
Jasprit Bumrah (1/23 in 2 overs), who has been out of action since the end of the England tour due to a back injury, produced a sensational Yorker to get rid of the dangerous Finch during his spell.
However, Wade made sure that the visitors closed things on a bright note as he added 44 runs in the last 18 balls along with Steve Smith (8).
Harshal had another night to remember as he allowed 32 without a wicket in his two overs.
The two teams will now move to Hyderabad for the series-defining third T20I on Sunday.