India’s Tour of Australia finally kicks off with the first ODI in Sydney on Friday. The Australia vs India 2020 series has three ODIs, three tests and the four-Test match series which is a part of the World Test Championship. Aaron Finch’s Australia will eye for a revenge of their ODI and Test series loss to the Indians the last time round.
Besides India’s historic 2-1 triumph in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy during their tour in 2018-19, India also secured the ODI series 2-1 and drew the T20Is 1-1. This time around, Australian limited-overs Finch will look to rewrite the script.
The Indian team will be without their star opener Rohit Sharma in the limited-overs leg as well as the Test matches as well. This is a big loss to the Indian team right before the start of the series. However, the Indian team has a good bench strength which is welcoming news for the team.
Virat Kohli, KL Rahul, Shikhar Dhawan are the three key batsmen in the absence of Rohit Sharma. All of them have had a good IPL season and has the form to fall back on.
Jasprit Bumrah leads the Indian bowling attack. He has Mohammed Shami, Navdeep Saini and Shardul Thakur for company. Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav and Ravindra Jadeja are the specialist spinners rounding off a good competitive team.
Sanju Samson and Shubman Gill also have been included in the ODI squad. Also, this series is a good opportunity for the likes of Shreyas Iyer, Mayank Agarwal and Manish Pandey to show their steel.
Australia Ahead in First ODI: Aakash Chopra
The Australian team on the other hand will see the return of Steve Smith and David Warner back in the squad. Their inclusion makes a big difference in the overall look of the team. Aussie skipper Aaron Finch, who had a difficult IPL is a different player in homely conditions in Australia.
Australia also have two good all-rounders in Glenn Maxwell and Marcus Stoinis. Stoinis have had a good IPL season unlike Maxwell, however, the latter cannot be counted out ever in the limited-overs game.
Mitchell Starc leads the Australian bowling attack with Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood for company. Ashton Agar and Azam Zampa form the spin attack with Maxwell as the third option.
Head to Head: Australia vs India 2020
Both these teams have played 145 matches against each other. Australia have won 78 matches and India 52. Though India won the last ODI series played down under, the Aussies cannot be counted out in their own backyard.
Pitch & Weather Conditions
This is the start of the Aussie summer. Weather conditions will be at its best for cricket and the pitch at the SCG will be at its best for batting. Any score between 250-300 is expected in the first innings.
Team News ahead of first ODI
Rohit Sharma will be missing from the entirety of the series and Hardik Pandya will play as a specialist batsman. He has not recovered completely from his back injury which will hinder him from bowling. With India having a number of options as openers, it will be interesting to see who opens with Shikhar Dhawan.
Australia do not have any injury concerns ahead of the ODI series and looks the more balanced of the two teams at least on paper.
Virat Kohli(c), Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul(w), Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Navdeep Saini, Shardul Thakur, Mayank Agarwal, Sanju Samson, Kuldeep Yadav, Shubman Gill
Aaron Finch(c), David Warner, Steven Smith, Marnus Labuschagne, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Alex Carey(w), Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Adam Zampa, Josh Hazlewood, Ashton Agar, Moises Henriques, Matthew Wade, Sean Abbott, Andrew Tye, Cameron Green, Daniel Sams