In the second ODI of the ongoing three-match series between India and Australia at the Holkar Stadium in Indore, India finds themselves in a favorable position with a 1-0 lead after a convincing victory in the first ODI.
The triumph was anchored by the brilliant performance of Mohammed Shami, who showcased his top-form by claiming a remarkable five-wicket haul, helping India restrict Australia to a total of 276 runs in their allotted 50 overs.
On the batting front, Shubman Gill and Ruturaj Gaikwad delivered commanding performances, contributing 74 and 71 runs, respectively, while KL Rahul and Suryakumar Yadav also made significant contributions with key half-centuries.
With the absence of senior players Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli, India’s focus is not only on clinching the series but also on fine-tuning their squad for the upcoming ODI World Cup, where they are set to face Australia in their opening match. The management is keen on addressing the middle-order concerns that have plagued them in recent ICC tournaments.
For the second ODI, it’s anticipated that Shubman Gill and Ruturaj Gaikwad will continue as the opening pair, given their explosive performances in the previous match. Gill, in particular, is riding a wave of remarkable form, finishing as the highest run-scorer in the Asia Cup 2023 with 302 runs in six matches.
On the flip side, Shreyas Iyer’s return from injury hasn’t been as impressive, as he struggled in the first ODI, managing only three runs off eight balls. However, Iyer is likely to be granted another opportunity to showcase his abilities.
KL Rahul, who will also captain the team, is expected to bat at number four and take up the wicketkeeper role, a responsibility he is likely to shoulder in the upcoming World Cup as well. Ishan Kishan is anticipated to follow at number five, while Suryakumar Yadav will hold the sixth position, building upon his pivotal role in the first ODI.
In the all-rounder department, Ravindra Jadeja and Washington Sundar are set to take the field at numbers seven and eight, respectively, and will be responsible for both batting and spin duties. The pace department boasts the talents of Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, and Mohammed Siraj, providing India with a formidable bowling lineup.
India’s expected XI for the second ODI against Australia:
Top-order: Shubman Gill, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shreyas Iyer
Middle-order: KL Rahul (c/wk), Ishan Kishan, Suryakumar Yadav
All-rounders: Ravindra Jadeja, Washington Sundar
Bowlers: Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj
This match not only holds significance for the series but also serves as a crucial testing ground for India’s World Cup preparations, particularly in addressing their middle-order issues.