India and Australia have shifted their focus to the ODIs, which start on March 17 (Friday) at the Wankhede in Mumbai. The three-match ODI series will be considered extremely important for both teams as it is the year of the ODI World Cup. With the world cup scheduled to be played in India later this year, it will be a good opportunity for the five-time champions Australia to test themselves in the same conditions.
Regular skipper Rohit Sharma’s absence in the first ODI will give young Kishan Ishan an excellent opportunity to open alongside in-form Shubman Gill. Without a doubt, star batter Virat Kohli will bat at No.3. In the absence of Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul is expected to bat at No.4 and will be followed by India’s T20I batting specialist Suryakumar Yadav.
Three all-rounders namely stand-in captain Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, and Washington Sundar will grab their spots in the playing XI. Jadeja who was not part of the ODI series against Sri Lanka and New Zealand marked a brilliant comeback from a knee injury in the Test series. With not many bilateral series left in the buildup, the team management would want to give the 34-year-old cricketer much-needed playing time.
There would be a toss-up between Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav for the single spot of the specialist spinner. It seems that Kuldeep might edge Chahal in the playing XI. Mohammed Shami and Mohammed Siraj would be the two pacers in the squad. Jasprit Bumrah’s injury has put added weight on these two bowlers’ shoulders as far as India’s pace attack is concerned.
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