After the historic breakthrough in the Test series, the Indian team will try to finalize their World Cup preparations with the three-match ODI series against Australia starting on Saturday. With the start of the match on the field, the team will also try to distance them from those unnecessary disputes, which has prompted two team members to return to India in the middle of the tour. Team India will also look at improving ODIs in Australia. Australia's batting order is also struggling with absence of David Warner and Steve Smith in ODIs, as in Tests.
During a TV show of Hardik Pandya and Lokesh Rahul, the controversy arising from 'unwarranted' remarks against women remained a topic of discussion for the last three days. BCCI sources said that Pandya and Rahul will not be selected for at least the first one-dayer match. Diana Idulji, a member of the administrators' committee, has recommended keeping both of these players suspended until the investigation is pending.
Prior to this controversy, Pandya's final eleven was being considered almost fixed, but Rahul was not in the race to play on Saturday. Captain Virat Kohli also condemned the comment of both the team's team on Friday and said his statements are inappropriate. Given the bad form of Rahul and the established pair of Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan in one-dayers, this batsman was unlikely to get a chance in the XI. The big question is about Pandya's absence because he provides balance to the team with his ability to bat in the middle order apart from bowling 10 overs.
The absence of Pandya means that India will have to change their bowling attack. Fast bowler Jaspreet Bumrah has already been rested from the current series and New Zealand tour. This will give the team management an opportunity to experiment with their bowling attack. Bhuvneshwar Kumar is almost certain to play and it depends on Kohli whether he comes with three fast bowlers in absence of Pandya or not. In such a situation, Mohammed Shami and Khalil Ahmed can get a chance in the final eleven because India is trying to retain this quartet for the World Cup. There is light grass on the SCG pitch and the Indian team can come up with the attack of three fast bowlers and two spinners.
Kohli has said that Ravindra Jadeja can play the role of all-rounder in Pandya's absence. In such a situation, Jadeja will be part of the spin attack with left-handed wrist spinner Kuldeep Yadav. If needed, Kedar Jadhav can play the role of a compulsive bowler. After the two openers Kohli will move to third place. Jadhav, Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Ambati Rayudu may be part of the middle order. Dhoni and Rayudu will look very special in this series. Dhoni struggled with a poor form in 2018 and scored 20 runs in 20 one-day internationals with 275 runs at an average of 25. This wicket-keeper batsman did not get a single half century in this period. During this period, their strike rate was 71.42, which is much lower than their career strike rate of 87.89.
Rayudu has been struggling for the crucial role of India's fourth-largest number and is giving him enough opportunities from the Asia Cup in September last year. During this period, Rayudu has scored 392 runs in 11 ODIs against the Asia Cup and the West Indies, with a century and three half-centuries to an average of 56. Compared to Rayudu's performance compared to other claimants of this place, However, the conditions under which they have performed are quite different from the situation in England. How Rayudu performs on Australia and New Zealand tour, it will decide if India has succeeded in finding a solution to the fourth-largest puzzle.
India had suffered similar problems in the one-day series in January 2016 even on Australia's last tour. Then Dhoni led India's team to a 1-4 loss. Rohit and Kohli then scored 441 and 381 runs in the five-match series, while Dhawan scored 287 runs. The middle order failed to make a useful contribution and thanks to Manish Pandey's belligerent century in the last ODI, the Indian team managed to avoid clean sweep from 5-0.
India's ODI record is poor in Australia. Apart from winning the World Championships 1985 and the CB Series 2008, India has lost 35 ODIs in 48 ODIs against Australia. While India may get the advantage of David Warner (220 runs in three games in the 2016 series) and Steve Smith (315 runs in five matches in 2016), while the fast bowling trio of Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood This series has been rested.
Australia has announced its playing eleven before the first ODI, in which Nathan Lyon has been named as the only spinner while Peter Siddle will return to this format for the first time since 2010. Wicketkeeper batsman Alex Carrie will start the innings for the first time in international one-day cricket. He will make an opening pair with captain Aaron Finch. In the middle order, Usman Khawaja, Shaun Marsh and Peter Handscomb have got place.
The batting order of the hosts is long. Marcus Stonis and Glenn Maxwell will be batting at number six and seventh respectively. The fast bowling attack of the team, however, appears weak on paper. Eight years later, Siddle returns, while left-handed fast bowler Jason Behrendorf is getting a chance to debut.
India: Virat Kohli (Captain), Rohit Sharma, Lokesh Rahul, Shikhar Dhawan, Ambati Rayudu, Dinesh Karthik, Kedar Jadhav, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Hardik Pandya, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuswendra Chahal, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar, Khalil Ahmed, Mohammed Shami And from Mohammad Siraj
Australia (playing XI): Aaron Finch (captain), Alex Carrie, Usman Khawaja, Shaun Marsh, Peter Handscab, Marcus Stonis, Glenn Maxwell, Nathan Lyon, Peter Siddle, Zaheer Richardson and Jason Behrendorf.