With skipper Virat Kohli stepping in to resolve India’s opening puzzle, the formidable hosts will look to ensure that their enviable home run remains intact against a full-strength Australia when the two teams clash in an ODI series starting here Tuesday.
Kohli said he has no hesitation coming down the order to ensure that KL Rahul’s consistency and Shikhar Dhawan’s experience are both accommodated in the Indian playing XI.
“…big possibility. I would be very happy to do so. Look I am not possessive about where I play. I am not insecure about where I bat,” Kohli said.
At a time when bilateral ODI series are fast losing relevance, the three-match rubber between two top teams could give a fresh lease of life to the format. But for the reader, it will be interesting to know which players are the likeliest to fetch them the most points in their respective fantasy XIs.
The high-voltage rivalries that fans enjoy will be back as Rohit Sharma’s elegance will be pitted against enforcer David Warner while the Virat Kohli vs Steve Smith duel will resume in earnest.
The young Marnus Labuschagne, easily the most exciting talent spreading his wings on the international cricket map with some stellar performances in the Test arena, would like to replicate his form in the shorter formats.
During the 2019 World Cup, till Dhawan was around, KL Rahul batted at No.4 as a stop-gap solution but Shreyas Iyer has made the slot his own with a string of good scores.
On the other hand, IPL’s costliest foreign recruit Pat Cummins, the crafty Kane Richardson and the ever-dependable Mitchell Starc will leave no stone unturned to make life uncomfortable for Kohli and his men.
Kuldeep Yadav, who has a hat-trick against Australia, is likely to be preferred over Yuzvendra Chahal.
Alex Carey’s gutsy batting and faultless glove-work prevails over Rishabh Pant’s flair even though the India player has the ability to surprise everyone with his explosive batting.
Frankly, Ravindra Jadeja looks a solid slot-in for the all-rounder’s spot unless India choose to go with Shivam Dube instead.
Dream XI: Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, Virat Kohli, Steve Smith, Marnus Labuschange, Alex Carey, Ravindra Jadeja, Pat Cummins, Mohammed Shami, Kuldeep Yadav, Mitchell Starc
India: Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Virat Kohli (c), Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Rishabh Pant (w), Kedar Jadhav, Ravindra Jadeja, Shivam Dube, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Shardul Thakur, Kuldeep Yadav, Navdeep Saini, Yuzvendra Chahal.
Australia: David Warner, Aaron Finch (c), Steven Smith, Marnus Labuschagne, Alex Carey (w), D Arcy Short, Ashton Turner, Josh Hazlewood, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Kane Richardson, Adam Zampa, Ashton Agar, Peter Handscomb.