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Virat Kohli aims to come back on level terms against Australia in deciding Sydney Twenty20

News Nation Bureau | Edited By : Siddharth Vishwanathan | Updated on: 24 Nov 2018, 03:10:26 PM
India's bowling was in good form in the Melbourne Twenty20 International as they aim to level the series against Australia. (Image credit: Twitter)

New Delhi:

The last time India took on Australia in the Twenty20 International in Sydney, they achieved a 3-0 whitewash and became the first team to whitewash the Aussies in any format at home. Since that achievement, India has won 12 Twenty20 series and has lost bilateral series only to the West Indies twice. Since September 2017, India has won seven straight series, with Rohit Sharma captaining the side to wins in the Nidahas Trophy tri-series and in the last series against the West Indies. However, in this series against Australia, India are trailing 0-1 and they have one last chance to ensure their winning momentum stays ahead of the final game at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

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Brisbane and Melbourne were affected by rain and the weather in Sydney on Sunday promises to be partly cloudy with a very slim chance of rain. New South Wales and the adjoining Sydney area have been battling bushfires and the state is in grave need of rain but cricket fans will be hoping that India do not come out on the wrong end of the DLS calculation should the game be interrupted.

India aim to avoid rain blues

In Brisbane, the rain gave India a stiffer target and they lost by four runs. In Melbourne, they were denied a chance to chase a decent total. In Sydney, they would be hoping to get a full game and chase in normal circumstances. The batting has a few issues to address, especially with KL Rahul who has not fired in this format since his 101* against England in Manchester. Virat Kohli had a rare failure in Brisbane and he will be gunning for a big score to get some confidence ahead of the Test series in Adelaide.

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In the bowling, the nature of the Sydney Cricket Ground wicket might prompt India to play three spinners. They might want to get Yuzvendra Chahal on this wicket and maybe bench Khaleel Ahmed, who has been impressive but expensive. However, Kohli might not tinker too much with the combination due to the wash-out in Melbourne and he might stick to the same squad.

Starc in, hosts eye series win

The year 2018 has been disastrous for Australia across all formats. Their last major success in Twenty20 Internationals was the Trans-Tasman Twenty20 tournament where they defeated New Zealand. Since then, they lost the tri-series final to Pakistan, suffered a loss to England and were whitewashed 3-0 against Pakistan before losing to South Africa. Aaron Finch’s side has the chance to redeem their woeful year by defeating a powerful India side. With the assurance that they will not lose the series, Australia will be gunning for only their second-ever series win against India. The hosts have gotten a big boost in the bowling, with Mitchell Starc coming into the squad in place of Billy Stanlake. Australia will be pleased by the depth in batting, with Ben McDermott impressive in the Melbourne game.

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First Published : 24 Nov 2018, 02:46:53 PM