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Big picture: More India vs Australia coming your way
On top of that, haven’t these two sides played against each other enough this year? They played a four-Test series in India in February and March, followed by a three-match ODI series. They played in the World Test Championship final in June straight after the IPL. They then played a second three-match ODI series in India in September just two weeks out from the ODI World Cup, where they met at the start and the end of the tournament. Not to mention the two sides played a three-match T20I series in India in September last year. Australia’s involvement in the Ashes series and India’s Asia Cup and Asia Games adventures in between times only add to the completely nonsensical scheduling of this series.
Whilst there are plenty of reasons not to play this series, it should be noted that the next T20 World Cup is only seven months away. For both sides, these five matches are part of only 11 scheduled T20Is before that World Cup.
India WWWWL (last five completed T20Is, most recent first)
In the spotlight: Kishan and Wade
Guessing the two XIs would be a fun trivia game for any fans ahead of this series. India’s XI is a complete mystery as they have played so many different combinations in recent times but it would seem likely that Suryakumar will slot in at No.3 and Ishan Kishan will likely keep, but where he bats remains a mystery. Axar Patel will be a lock to return.
India (probable): 1 Ishan Kishan (wk), 2 Yashasvi Jaiswal, 3 Suryakumar Yadav (capt), 4 Tilak Varma, 5 Shivam Dube, 6 Rinku Singh, 7 Axar Patel/Washington Sundar, 8 Ravi Bishnoi, 9 Arshdeep Singh, 10 Prasidh Krishna/Avesh Khan, 11 Mukesh Kumar
Australia are purely looking for sober cricketers. Steven Smith could well play as he was set to open in the T20I series against South Africa before he was ruled out with a wrist injury. Marcus Stoinis and Sean Abbott should play given they both missed the World Cup semi and final and Tanveer Sangha will probably get a chance to allow Zampa to relax.
Australia (probable): 1 Steven Smith, 2 Matthew Short, 3 Aaron Hardie, 4 Josh Inglis, 5 Marcus Stoinis, 6 Tim David, 7 Matthew Wade (capt/wk), 8 Sean Abbott, 9 Nathan Ellis, 10 Jason Behrendorff, 11 Tanveer Sangha
Pitch and conditions
It will be humid and there is a chance of a couple of showers in the afternoon. It was similar weather when these two sides met in an ODI at the same venue in March and Australia quicks help set up a 10-wicket win. Australia also won a low-scoring T20I at the same venue in 2019. Ball has tended to dominate bat in the three T20Is played at the ground.
“Traditionally, the pitches are very, very good for batting over here. In the West Indies, they tend to slow up and take a little bit of spin. So any opportunity we get on a slowish wicket with a bit of spin is an opportunity for someone to put their hand up and show what they can do.”
Interim Australia captain Matthew Wade on the conditions in Visakhapatnam
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