Published: Sun, September 17, 2017
Health | By Jay Jacobs

India v Australia: Five-match ODI series begins in Chennai on Sunday

India v Australia: Five-match ODI series begins in Chennai on Sunday

2,380: Number of days since Steven Smith last batted in an ODI in India. "He had found it hard to switch, but once you identify a role and once you get the balance by giving the player more chances, he gets more confident", Virat Kohli added.

"I think Shikhar has obviously been playing well for India for the a year ago or so at the top of the order".

The fact that coach Darren Lehmann has skipped the limited-overs tour to India to prepare for the clash against their old rivals only goes on to establish the importance, or the lack of it thereof, attached to the bilateral ODI series that begins with a day-night match at the M.A. Chidambaram Stadium on Sunday.

Kohli's primary agenda will be to start the series on a positive note, thereby end India's Australian jinx at the MA Chidambaram Stadium.

An emphasis on squad rotation, player management and using the format to hand experience to young players has resulted in an nearly apathetic approach to the One Day International cricket, which is fast becoming more a proving ground for new talent than a format where winning is everything. "All those things are to get that aspect of mind games, which I think creates excitement for fans". So I think it going to be very good for the batsmen, lots of run to be scored. However, Kohli's immediate challenge is to find a role for a Rahane, who might have little to do when the regulars are back, and ensure that Rahul doesn't feel shortchanged in a new batting position. With scores of 4, 17 and 7 in three matches, he was dropped from the fifth game. That's not being fair to the sport and that's something that we as a team do not believe in. No. 4 spot filled in too. At the same, if the team can't be managed to bat 1st, the team should focus on making opponent to down the Run Rate below 6 also makes a hope. The latter has been part of the team since India's Champions Trophy campiagn.

Yadav made his test debut against Australia in Dharamsala and took 4-91. It has rather turned out to be a policy for Team India to have at least one wrist-spinner in their squad. Yes, their record at home has been awesome, considering they have overwhelmed England and Australia, their overseas success is limited to winning in the West Indies and Sri Lanka. India will therefore have to choose between him and Yuzvendra Chahal for the second spinner's slot.

"He is a guy Sri (team consultant Sridharan Sriram) has organised to come down and bowl".

"Sometimes they are good but they don't get the opportunity". There is a chance to train against someone like that.

For a well-oiled side like India, a series win against the Aussies, even though on home turf, will act as a stepping stop for the 2019 World Cup campaign.

"I will be happy if I can repeat the performances from last time. Hopefully we can put him under pressure early in his spell and try and take him for as many as we can", he said.

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