Australia tour of India 2019: Preview, Team Squads, Schedule and Series Predictions
India's squad for the ODI series against Australia is largely indicative of the mindset of the team management and the selectors with regard to the direction in which they want to take the team leading into the World Cup.
The five ODIs against Australia are the final ODIs for the Indian players after which they will feature in the IPL and then dive straight into the World Cup. This is why analysts are bound to read into the team selection more in case of India.
Australia still have an ODI series against Pakistan which gives them little more scope to chop and change. As it is, the need of the hour for the Australian team is to build a team rather than finalize it. The likes of Peter Handscomb and Usman Khawaja are among the probables but have still not cemented their place in the ODI setup.
The uncertainty regarding Steve Smith and David Warner has increased the confusion further. Although the two star players would be available from the 4th ODI against Pakistan, both are nursing elbow injuries - Smith's more serious than Warner's. Their is no surety about when they will be fully fit. This is why the Aussies would like to groom a couple of players in their place in case they do not get fit in time.
Among the bowlers, Nathan Coulter-Nile has been given a chance but has been suffering from vertigo. One of the most disappointing things for the team is that Mitchell Starc has suffered an injury just before the series and would not be available. However, it would also give an opportunity to the likes of Jhye Richardson and Jason Behrendorff to further stake their claim for the World Cup spot.
This reduces the chances of Josh Hazlewood to make the cut. Pat Cummins remains their spearhead. Australia would desperately want opener and captain Aaron Finch to come back to form. What will boost their chances is the power of Marcus Stoinis and Glenn Maxwell in the middle order. Adam Zampa is more than likely to seal his spot as the first-choice spinner.
For India, the most interesting choice is dropping Dinesh Karthik because the team had been grooming him as the finisher for a long time and had also received rich dividends. However, to make some sense of the move, Rishabh Pant has been included in his place and the team management wants to give him game time.
However, there is little doubt in minds of many that Dinesh Karthik will make the World Cup squad. Vijay Shankar has also got a look in on the back of impressive performances in the T20Is against New Zealand. The core of the team has breen retained.
Siddharth Kaul is an interesting pick who will fill in for Bhuvneshwar Kumar for the first two ODIs. This indicates that he is still in the scheme of things while Mohammed Siraj and Khaleel Ahmed have faced the axe.
India's top three in Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli are back and would have a dress rehearsal before the WC. Ambati Raydu will be slotted at number four while MS Dhoni and Kedar Jadhav will bat at five and six. With the power of Hardik Pandya at number seven, India can afford to play two spinners in Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal which will add to the pace bowling duo of Jasprit Bumrah and either of Mohammed Shami or Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
Mayank Markande has received his maiden T20I call-up while Bhuvneshwar and Kuldeep Yadav have been rested from the T20I series.
Here's a look at the squads-
Australia ODI squad
Aaron Finch (c), Usman Khawaja, Shaun Marsh, Peter Handscomb, Glenn Maxwell, Ashton Turner, Marcus Stoinis, Alex Carey (vc), Pat Cummins (vc), Nathan Coulter-Nile, Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson, Jason Behrendorff, Nathan Lyon, Adam Zampa, *D’Arcy Short - selected to cover S.Marsh for the start of the tour.
India's squad for 1st and 2nd ODI
Virat Kohli (Capt), Rohit Sharma (vc), Shikhar Dhawan, Ambati Rayudu, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni (wk), Hardik Pandya, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Vijay Shankar, Rishabh Pant, Siddharth Kaul, KL Rahul
India's squad for last three ODIs
Virat Kohli (Capt), Rohit Sharma (vc), Shikhar Dhawan, Ambati Rayudu, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni (wk), Hardik Pandya, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Vijay Shankar, KL Rahul, Rishabh Pant
India's squad for T20I series against Australia
Virat Kohli(Capt), Rohit Sharma (vc), KL Rahul, Shikhar Dhawan, Rishabh Pant, Dinesh Karthik, MS Dhoni (WK), Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Vijay Shankar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Umesh Yadav, Sidharth Kaul, Mayank Markande
Here's are our predictions for the series:
Winner: ODI - India (4-1)
T20I - India (2-0)
ODI - Australia- Peter Handscomb, India- Rohit Sharma
T20I - Australia- Glenn Maxwell, India- Shikhar Dhawan
ODI - Australia- Kane Richardson, India- Kuldeep Yadav
T20I - Australia- Adam Zampa, India- Jasprit Bumrah
ODI - Australia- Glenn Maxwell, India- Virat Kohli
T20I - Australia- Glenn Maxwell, India- Shikhar Dhawan
Here's the fixture schedule of the tour:
First T20I – February 24
ACA-VDCA Stadium, Visakhapatnam
Second T20I – February 27
M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru
First ODI - March 2
Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium, Dehradun
Second ODI - 5 March
Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium, Nagpur
Third ODI - 8 March
JSCA International Stadium Complex, Ranchi
Fourth ODI - 10 March
Punjab Cricket Association Stadium, Mohali
Fifth ODI - 13 March
Feroz Shah Kotla, Delhi
©Cricket World 2019