India and Australia will inaugurate the much-awaited tour on Friday (November 27) when the two teams will play the first match of the three-match ODI series at Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG).
With India resuming international cricket after over eight months, the fans will be excited to watch them combating the arch-rivals Australia. Also, during the series, Virat Kohli and Co. will wear Team India’s 1992 World Cup jersey with the logo of MPL sports, the new kit sponsor. The match will broadcast on Sony at 9:10 am.
Here, let’s take a look at India’s predicted XI :
As Rohit Sharma is out because of injury, Mayank Agarwal is likely to open the innings. The right-hand batsman had a fantastic Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020 season as he was one of the leading scorers for Kings XI Punjab. Team India will hope to continue the same form in this ODI series.
Shikhar Dhawan last played the ODI in January this year. He was injured and thus, missed the last assignment of Team India against New Zealand.
But the left-hand batsman had an amazing IPL 2020 for Delhi Capitals. He became the first batsman to score two consecutive centuries in the cash-rich league. The team will hope for him to manifest a similar performance in the ODI series because his regular partner Rohit Sharma is absent.
Virat Kohli (c):
Like always, everyone has high hopes from Team India’s captain. But the worrying factor is that Virat Kohli is not in his best of forms. In the recently concluded IPL, his performance slumped in the last matches after already having a slow start of the season. With the hitman missing in the XI, Kohli needs to be in shape to beat the strong Australian team.
Shreyas Iyer had scored maiden ODI century in the last tour against New Zealand. He had soaked in the pressure after Kohli lost his wicket and played a mature knock while batting at number four.
In the IPL 2020, he was the leading scorer for his team but had a faltering season.
If in this tour he comes out at his best, India’s number four player problem will be solved.
KL Rahul (wk & VC):
KL Rahul, who has been appointed as Virat’s deputy, will don the gloves for Team India. Expectations are also high for him because he ended the IPL 2020 as the highest scorer. Although in the league he played as the opener, he likely to play as a middle-order batsman in this season.
This series will mark Hardik Pandya’s comeback in international cricket. He last wore the Indian jersey against South Africa in the T20I series at home. Since then, he has been out of the national team because of a back injury. Well, it will not be his first assignment in cricket.
He featured in the IPL 2020 and had a stunning season. His power-hitting for Mumbai Indians helped them to lift the fifth title. But he was used as a pure batsman. It would be interesting to see will India use him in the bowling option for this series.
Ravindra Jadeja had a good IPL season with the bat, but with the ball, he was missing accuracy which is his strength. Thus, it is a concerning factor for India. The spin bowling all-rounder will have to find the perfect line and length as soon as possible.
Navdeep Saini is an inexperienced player in Australian conditions. Moreover, he had a poor IPL season, picking only six-wicket in 13 matches at an economy rate of 8.29.
However, he has picked five wickets in five ODIs, played so far, at the economy rate of below seven. India will be expecting him to come out best.
The leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal is the trump card for any captain. In 15 matches played in IPL 2020, he picked up 21 wickets and every time gave a breakthrough whenever the team needed. Having an outstanding season, he will be in immense confidence which will be helpful in the Australia tour.
Jasprit Bumrah will spearhead India’s pace attack. His ten overs are the most crucial and decisive for the team.
In the IPL 2020, he was in his best form, which is positive news for the team. He finished up as the second-highest wicket-taker of the tournament and was a significant contributor to help MI lift the trophy for the fifth time.
Mohammed Shami also had an impressive IPL season, finishing as the top wicket-taker for Kings XI Punjab. Cricket boffins appreciated his bowling with the new ball. The team will want him to replicate a similar performance during the marquee tour.