Virat Kohli's Indian cricket team will play five ODIs against Australia at home in what will be their final international assignment before the 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup in England. (Image credit: Twitter)
Virat Kohli’s Indian cricket team will be aiming to build-up serious momentum ahead of the 2019 World Cup which will be played in England on May 31. Looking at the importance of the tournament, the Indian side has a cramped schedule just before the start of the tournament. India is slated to play 13 ODIs before the World Cup and their campaign begins with the three-match ODI series against Australia beginning on January 12. After two games on January 15 and 18 in Adelaide and Melbourne, India then play five ODIs and three Twenty20 Internationals against New Zealand starting on January 23 and ending on February 10.
Following the end of the New Zealand series, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has announced the fixtures for the home summer with India once again taking on Australia in five ODIs and two Twenty20 Internationals. Kohli’s side will have a two-week break before the series begins with two T20Is in Bengaluru and Vizag starting on February 24 and February 27. Following the end of the T20Is, the ODI series will be played.
The first match will take place on March 2nd in Hyderabad, followed by a game on March 5 at the VCA stadium in Jamtha, Nagpur. The series will then shift to Ranchi for the third ODI on March 8 while the fourth game will be played at PCA stadium in Mohali on March 10. The series will then end with the fifth and final ODI at the Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi. This series will be the last international fixture after which the IPL will begin from March 23 and will be played in India.
After the end of the IPL around mid-May, the Indian cricket team will head to England for the World Cup, which will be hosted in that country after a gap of 20 years. Kohli’s side are currently the No.2 ranked side and will be aiming to win the World Cup for the third time after securing victory in 1983 and 2011. Australia, who are the five-time world champions, have been struggling in all formats of the game ever since the bans on star players Steve Smith and David Warner for one year due to the ball-tampering scandal in the Newlands Test versus South Africa in Cape Town.