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Australia vs India 1st T20 Preview: Big hitting Australia hold the advantage?
- Australia and India turn attentions to the T20 series
- The host won the ODI series 2-1
- Australia have won their last five home T20Is
- India are unbeaten in their last six away T20Is
- Virat Kohli has four 50+ scores in his last five T20Is in Australia
India's captain Virat Kohli (Getty Images)
After a comfortable 2-1 win in the ODI series, Australia will hope to continue their dominance over India as the teams prepare for the three-match T20I series. The first T20I will be played on Friday at the Manuka Oval in Canberra.
India have the advantage of most of their T20I squad members being IPL regulars, although it didn’t help much in the ODI series.
Australia rode on the batting heroics of captain Aaron Finch (249 runs, SR 90.54) and Steve Smith (216 runs, SR 148.96) in the ODIs. The pair will once again be crucial at the top of the order. The explosive Glenn Maxwell will hope to continue from his ODI form that saw him strike at a rate of 194.18.
Adam Zampa (seven wickets) and Josh Hazlewood (six wickets) were Australia’s best bowlers in the ODIs. The duo will be vital for the hosts in the T20Is too, although both have a lot of catching up to do in the format.
David Warner is out of the series with an injury while Pat Cummins has been rested. Mitchell Starc’s poor form raises questions, but should start the first T20I. Cameron Green’s debut ODI performance gives an extra choice for Australia.
India’s struggles in the ODI series have largely been around their bowling unit. Jasprit Bumrah has been uncharacteristically expensive (ER 6.61) with only Mohammed Shami (four wickets, ER 6.94) having an effective series.
Hardik Pandya (210 runs) and Virat Kohli (173 runs) have been India’s anchors with the bat in the ODI series and will be key in the T20Is as well. A better output will be expected from Shikhar Dhawan and KL Rahul, who are both coming off impressive performances from the IPL.
With the upcoming Tests looming on the horizon, India will be looking to rotate Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah. Deepak Chahar and T Natarajan are impressive in the T20s recently and could get a look in. For the lone spinner’s slot, it could be a toss-up between Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav.
Australia vs India Head to Head
Australia have a 8-11 win-loss record in 20 T20Is against India while the same record reads 3-5 at home. Australia have last played T20Is against England in September when they lost the three-match series 2-1. India were last seen in this format in New Zealand early in the year when they won the five-match series 5-0.
Australia vs India Match Up
The difference in the ODIs has been Australia’s all-round strength and that could once again be the differentiator in the T20Is. India do not have many multi-dimensional players which puts more pressure on the half-fit Hardik Pandya or Ravindra Jadeja to come up with the goods. Australia hold a slight advantage and will fancy their chances of starting with a win.
Australia vs India Stats
- Australia have won the only T20I played at this venue.
- Australia have won their last five home T20Is.
- India are unbeaten in their last six away T20Is.
- India have won each of their last eight T20Is when they were chasing.
- Virat Kohli is the highest run scorer in H2H T20Is and has four 50+ scores in his last five T20Is in Australia.
India will hope to continue from the third ODI win and build up momentum for the tour. Australia won’t be pushovers, though, as they build up towards next year’s World T20. It could be an interesting game that could run close.
One area where the hosts clearly have an advantage is with their big0hitting ability. With the likes of Finch, Maxwell, Smith and Labuschagne, Australia will fancy their chances of scoring more sixes than their visitors.