Preview: After receiving an eight-wicket thrashing in the second Twenty20 International (T20I), India will aim for a better show when they take on Australia in their third and final cricket match at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium on Friday.
Left-arm speedster Jason Behrendorff had wiped away India’s top-four in Guwahati as the hosts were bundled out for 118 in the second match of the T20I series. Leg-spinner Adam Zampa, too, had foxed the Indians with his guile and variety.
India will hope that the batting failure was a one-off incident and their batsmen will come out all guns blazing in the decisive tie.
Australia had lost the One-Day International (ODI) series 1-4 and Thursday’s match presents a great opportunity for them to take a trophy back home. They will be full of confidence after the win in the second T20I.
India skipper Virat Kohli will seek to continue his winning run in terms of series wins.
The hosts will heavily rely on their hard-hitting batsmen Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Hardik Pandya. Manish Pandey and Kedar Jadhav will add depth to the Indian batting line-up.
On the bowling front, skipper Virat Kohli might also fancy playing veteran pacer Ashish Nehra, who will retire from international cricket on November 1 in a T20I against New Zealand in Delhi.
The Indian bowling will be spearheaded by pacers Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar. Wrist-spinners Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav will look to providing the brakes on the Australian batting in the middle overs.
On the other hand, the visitors will hope for a better show from their middle order, including the likes of Glenn Maxwell and Travis Head, who have failed to click as a unit so far.
All-rounders Moises Henriques and Dan Christian will be asked to deliver — both with the ball and bat. Henriques and Christian have played a lot of Indian Premier League (IPL) matches at this venue. Visiting skipper David Warner captains the Sunrisers Hyderabad — the city-based IPL franchise — and knows the venue inside out. This will be crucial in terms of being prepared for the crucial tie.
Warner will pin his hopes on pacers Patrick Cummins, Behrendorff, Kane Richardson and Nathan Coulter-Nile to keep the Indian batsmen under control.
India: Virat Kohli (captain), Mahendra Singh Dhoni (wicket-keeper), Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Manish Pandey, Kedar Jadhav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Hardik Pandya, Dinesh Karthik, Ashish Nehra, Lokesh Rahul, Axar Patel.
Australia: David Warner (captain), Moises Henriques, Aaron Finch, Tim Paine (wicket-keeper), Daniel Christian, Glenn Maxwell, Jason Behrendorff, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Travis Head, Adam Zampa, Andrew Tye, Kane Richardson.