India Gears Up for ODI World Cup with a Depleted Squad
Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli Lead India’s Against Australia
As the cricketing world eagerly awaits the start of the ODI World Cup, India finds itself in a peculiar situation. The nation is preparing for their final game before the World Cup, hoping to fine-tune their strategies and gather momentum. However, this dress rehearsal comes with a twist as the Indian squad is severely depleted, leaving captain Rohit Sharma with limited options.
Rohit and Kohli’s Return
Two stalwarts, Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli, have made their comeback to the team, infusing a much-needed boost of experience and leadership. Their presence is vital as India aspires to clinch their first-ever ODI series whitewash against Australia. This achievement would not only boost morale but also set the tone for their World Cup campaign, which kicks off on October 8 in Chennai.
Australia’s Contrasting Form
In contrast, the Australian team, considered one of the World Cup favorites, has had a rocky road leading up to the tournament. They stumbled in their recent series against South Africa, losing three consecutive ODIs and adding two more defeats to their tally in India. Sean Abbott, reflecting on their performance, attributed the losses to a lack of execution despite some promising moments.
A win in their final warm-up match against India in Rajkot could provide Australia with a much-needed morale boost before they face another formidable challenge in Chennai.
- Date: September 27
- Time: 13:30 IST
- Location: Saurashtra Cricket Association Stadium, Rajkot
Weather and Pitch Conditions
The weather forecast for the day predicts a sunny day with temperatures soaring to 35 degrees Celsius. The flat pitch at the venue is expected to favor the batsmen, and history suggests that crossing the 300-run mark is achievable. In the last ODI at this ground in January 2020, India and Australia engaged in a thrilling contest, with the hosts posting 340 runs, and the visitors responding with 304.
India: Rohit Sharma faces a challenging task as he selects his playing XI. India’s squad is depleted due to a combination of player rest, personal reasons, injuries, and viral fever within the team. Notable absentees include Mohammed Shami, Shardul Thakur, Hardik Pandya, Axar Patel, and Shubman Gill, leaving Rohit with just 12 players to choose from.
Australia: The Australian team welcomes back key players, including captain Pat Cummins and left-arm pacer Mitchell Starc. Glenn Maxwell may also be available for selection.
India: Rohit Sharma (c), Ishan Kishan, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul (wk), Suryakumar Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Siraj Jasprit, Bumrah
Australia: David Warner, Mitchell Marsh, Steve Smith, Marnus Labuschagne, Glenn Maxwell, Josh Inglis (wk), Cameron Green, Marcus Stoinis, Pat Cummins (c), Mitchell Starc, Adam Zampa
As India faces Australia in this crucial warm-up match, cricket enthusiasts around the world eagerly anticipate the exciting showdown between two cricketing giants. The outcome of this game may not decide the World Cup, but it will undoubtedly set the stage for what promises to be an exhilarating tournament.