1st ODI: India vs Australia
Virat Kohli, Steve Smith, Rohit Sharma and David Warner; who else can you ask for if you’re planning a runfest in the sun in Mumbai?
Well, if you were greedy you might add England’s Ben Stokes! But the 1st ODI India vs Australia at the Wankhede Stadium brings together two of the most exciting ODI teams on the planet. India are ranked second to England in the world in ODI cricket with Australia in fourth place in the ICC rankings.
And we can expect some aggressive blowing and big hitting as some of the world’s most accomplished players go toe to toe.
India’s recent form has been superb and the passionate home fans will be prepared to roar them on to another victory, but in Australia they face a tough opponent. The Green Baggies can be uncompromising and we can expect fireworks in Mumbai.
Men in Blue sensational at home
India kicked off the New Year with a T20 contest against Sri Lanka and came through with a convincing 2-0 win. After the first match was tied as a no result, India won the second by seven wickets and the third by 78 runs. Openers KL Rahul and Shikhar Dhawan both hit quick fire half centuries in the third match at Pune.
As well as beating Sri Lanka, Virat Kohli’s men have comfortably beaten Bangladesh and West Indies. Big hitter Rohit Sharma has had a heavy workload over the last year but his captain Kohli is the only batsman ranked higher in the ICC ODI rankings. And Sharma likes playing against Australia. In the 2019 ODI World Cup in England he completed his 2,000 runs against the Aussies, in 37 ODI innings, which is the least by any player to reach that milestone against one team.
The return of Jasprit Bumrah adds some real bite to the Indian bowling attack, and alongside the unerringly accurate Mohammed Shami he will give the touring batsmen a tough examination, while Kuldeep Yadav will take the spinning responsibilities.
Aussies’ IPL big hitters
The tourists are making a good recovery from the ball tampering scandal that rocked the Australian game, and since the return of the banned Steve Smith and David Warner they have become a tough all-round outfit once more.
We expect to see plenty of action from Australia’s opening batters in the India vs Australia highlights, and they’ll certainly need to be firing on all cylinders to give the underdogs a fighting chance. The explosive Aaron Finch is the second highest ranked batsman in T20 cricket while his partner Warner is seventh in the ODI rankings. If these two get Australia off to a fast start then India will come under real pressure. They both play in the IPL so know how to handle the big crowds in this cricket hotbed.
They too have a dangerous bowling attack, led by the magnificent quickie Pat Cummings who, alongside Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood, can put the wind up any batting line-up.
It’s going to be a great contest!
These are two well matched sides who have played out many great battles over the past five years. During that time India have won 20 matches to Australia’s 18 and there have been two no results.
In the World Cup India ended a ten match winning streak enjoyed by the Aussies, before which they had won four each of the previous eight one day internationals. Shikhar Darwan and Rohit Sharma shared a 127 opening stand while Kohli added 81 in that victory.
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