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Australia vs India: Key Points India need to Answer

Moving on to the upcoming one-day series, there are a few key points that India will need to answer. With the ICC World Cup just months away

Last updated: 10.01.2019
India vs Australia | Sports Social Blog

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India’s 2018-19 tour has been historic, to say the least. Starting off with the shortest format of the game, India drew the series one a piece in a series that was marred by rain. The test series then followed and the Indian team broke numerous records on the way to a two to one series triumph. Moving on to the upcoming one-day series, there are a few key points that India will need to answer. With the ICC World Cup just months away, India will look towards this series and the upcoming tour to New Zealand to find potential chinks in the armour and address them quickly.

Let’s dive into these points:

1. Team Combination:


Ever since the 2015 World Cup, India has been on a roll in the fifty over format, sometimes winning thrilling encounters, sometimes obliterating their opponents out of the series entirely. During this time period, the core of the team has remained the same and has thus ensured that the squad remains well gelled through thick and thin. Newcomers and returns from some of the established cricketers have never really had much of an effect on team morale. However, in the one major tournament between the two World Cups, the 2017 Champions Trophy, India was exposed a little bit by Pakistan in the final. This laid focus on how heavily reliant the team is on the top three of the batting unit.

So, how does India counter this situation! The emergence of Kedar Jadhav and return to form of Ambati Rayudu might hold the key to this puzzle.

2. The flexibility of the Batting Order:

When I say flexibility of the batting order, I mean the numbers five to seven. Fans will feel that it should be four to seven, but here’s why not. Ambati Rayudu is a busy player at the crease. He deals in strike rotation and can kick along when necessary, the type of utility player around whom the brute strength of Dhoni and Pandya can function. Not leaving behind Kedar Jadhav as well, but Dhoni at five and Jadhav at six will make this batting line up more functional and Dhoni will bring in his biggest strength at five, his experience.

The presence of Kedar Jadhav also allows Virat to have an additional bowling option and take the pressure off from the core bowling attack.

3. Who will share the new ball:

The amount of rest the Bhuvneshwar Kumar has had, it is a given that he will take the new ball. It is not just because of the new ball but because Bhuvi has become a tremendously well-rounded bowler in the shorter formats of the game. A thinking bowler, he has brought in various variations to his bowling and has quickly risen to become one of the best death bowlers in the world. His usual bowling partner, Jasprit Bumrah will miss out on these two series after being handed a much-deserved rest. Mohammed Siraj has been named the replacement but I feel young left-arm speedster Khaleel Ahmed will be given the nod ahead of Siraj and Shami. The youngster is ranked highly by the think tank and brings a dynamic that has been missing from the bowling attack for quite some time, a left arm pacer.

While there is no doubt that once Bumrah returns he will be brought to the front immediately, but this will be the series Khaleel Ahmed will be looking to stake a claim as one of the bowlers to be on the flight to England and Wales in May.

4. The Bowling Combination:

India enters the series with plenty of bowling options at their disposal. Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj, and Khaleel Ahmed make up the pace-attack with Bhuvneshwar Kumar while Jadeja, Kuldeep and Chahal make up the spin department. Hardik Pandya and Kedar Jadhav are the all-rounders. With all of them in contention and the eye on the World Cup, I feel India should play their first choice team. The conditions and ground sizes are different in Australia, New Zealand and the World Cup venues but what is more important at this point of time is not changing what is in the team’s hand. And that is the playing eleven. Kuldeep and Chahal need to play along with Bhuvi as the frontline bowlers with Hardik and Jadhav making up the all-rounder positions.

Australia might have been dominated in the test series, but they will be looking to bounce back in the one-day series. A team always difficult to beat in their own backyard, this series promises to be full of fireworks. India will be looking to win but they will also be keen in making sure that all of their top prospects for the World Cup squad get in game time.

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