Rain, rain, go away, come again another day. Dreary conditions in Brisbane and Melbourne has shaped the series in favour of Australia, Sydney however should get the all clear for any wet weather in the series-decider. India has one thing on their agenda, and that’s denying Australia of a series victory at the SCG tomorrow night.
Australia are inching towards an unlikely series victory against one of the powerhouses of world cricket. Wet weather has probably altered the T20I series a bit more than first anticipated, somewhat restricting India of their very best cricket. Australia’s middle order stepped up in the first game at the Gabba where Chris Lynn, Glenn Maxwell and Marcus Stoinis were able to exploit India’s bowlers by targeting both Khaleel Ahmed and Krunal Pandya. Melbourne prompted a lot more challenges as the home sides opening pair once again failed to deliver which left things up to the middle and lower order yet again. This time around, the troublesome-trio of Lynn, Maxwell and Stoinis failed to replicate their performances from Brisbane which left them in a spot of bother towards the back end of the innings. Entering the starting XI in place of the injured Billy Stanlake, Nathan Coulter-Nile was once again called upon to score some quick runs down the order, and he delivered with 18 runs off just 9 deliveries.
Hobart Hurricanes gun-opening batsman D’Arcy Short is running out of opportunities after a string of quiet performances for Australia, he’s scored just 21 runs this series against India and could be on the chopping block if he fails a third time in Sydney. A surprise inclusion ahead of this third & final T20I at the SCG for the Australians has boosted the team’s morale as they welcome back star-speedster Mitchell Starc who’s last T20 International was back in 2016. The most recent Sheffield Shield match played at the SCG provided a very flat wicket, so there shouldn’t be too many demons in the pitch. In saying that, Sydney is renowned for its spin so Adam Zampa should be right in the thick of the action like at the Gabba.
India will finally get their wish tomorrow evening with conditions expected to be fine and not too chilly, and most importantly a 0% chance of rain. Failing to perform at the peak of their powers in Brisbane and not getting an opportunity with the bat in Melbourne, India will be eager to put in a solid performance before the test series starts next month. The anticipation and excitement revolving around Virat Kohli hasn’t exactly lived up to expectations as of yet for a variety of reasons, one being the wet conditions to kick off the tour. Sydney might be the venue where King Kohli comes to play, the short boundaries and lightning-quick outfield should assist his batting-prowess. Shikhar Dhawan appears to be the tourist’s in-form batsman after a boundary-hitting onslaught in Brisbane, although it’s difficult to tell after just one innings.
Thousands of Indian supporters have travelled to Australia to see their beloved country perform, so they’ll be hoping that the likes of Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli can produce a fireworks spectacular to end the T20 series on a high. One thing that has been noticeable is the quality of India’s fast bowling attack. The deceptive Bhuvneshwar Kumar has been hard to get a hold of so far in this series, his partner in crime Jasprit Bumrah hasn’t done a bad job himself either. Wristspinner Kuldeep Yadav has been brilliant, and given the spin-friendly conditions in Sydney Yuzvendra Chahal could also come into the starting XI. It appears unlikely that the Indians will make any changes to their batting line-up, KL Rahul and Rishabh Pant will be given a good opportunity to perform before reshuffling the team. Unless there are any drastic changes to the conditions of the pitch, this should be a high scoring match with plenty of action.
Top 5 fantasy picks | Australia | 3rd T20I | Sydney
- Glenn Maxwell
- Aaron Finch
- Marcus Stoinis
- Mitchell Starc
- Chris Lynn
Wildcard pick – Andrew Tye
Top 5 fantasy picks | India | 3rd T20I | Sydney
- Virat Kohli
- Bhuvneshwar Kumar
- Rohit Sharma
- KL Rahul
- Kuldeep Yadav
Wildcard pick – Rishabh Pant
Australia (possible) – 1. D’Arcy Short 2. Aaron Finch © 3. Chris Lynn 4. Glenn Maxwell 5. Marcus Stoinis 6. Ben McDermott 7. Alex Carey (wk) 8. Mitchell Starc 9. Nathan Coulter-Nile/Jason Behrendorff 10. Andrew Tye 11. Adam Zampa.
India (possible) – 1. Rohit Sharma 2. Shikhar Dhawan 3. KL Rahul 4. Virat Kohli © 5. Rishabh Pant (wk) 6. Dinesh Karthik 7. Krunal Pandya 8. Kuldeep Yadav 9. Bhuvneshwar Kumar 10. Jasprit Bumrah 11. Khaleel Ahmed/Yuzvendra Chahal.