India vs Australia: World Cup 2023 openers promises a thrilling contest | Match 5 | Pre-review

India vs Australia

India vs Australia – ICC ODI World Cup 2023 Live Updates

The ICC ODI World Cup 2023 has kicked off with a blockbuster clash between two of the most successful teams in cricket history: India and Australia. The match is being played at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai, a venue that holds special significance for both sides. India won their second World Cup title here in 2011, while Australia clinched their first one here in 1987.

High Stakes for Both Teams

The stakes are high for both teams as they aim to start their campaign on a winning note. India, led by Rohit Sharma, is looking to repeat their 2011 feat of lifting the trophy on home soil. The hosts have a formidable batting line-up, featuring the likes of Virat Kohli, KL Rahul, Rishabh Pant and Hardik Pandya. Rohit Sharma is also on the verge of becoming the first batsman to hit 300 sixes in ODIs.

Absence of Shubman Gill

However, India will miss the services of their young opener Shubman Gill, who is recovering from dengue. Gill was in sublime form in the recent IPL, scoring 677 runs for Gujarat Titans and leading them to the title. His absence means that India will have to find a new partner for Rohit at the top of the order. The team may opt for either Shikhar Dhawan or Prithvi Shaw, both of whom have experience of opening in ODIs.

Spin Dilemma for India

India will also have to decide on their spin combination, as Chennai is known to offer assistance to the slow bowlers. The team may turn to local hero Ravichandran Ashwin, who has not played an ODI since 2017 but has been in excellent form in Tests and T20s. Ashwin will be eager to prove his worth in the limited-overs format and impress the home crowd. He may be joined by either Yuzvendra Chahal or Kuldeep Yadav, who have formed a successful spin duo for India in the past.

Australia’s Leadership Transition

Australia, on the other hand, is led by Pat Cummins, who has taken over the captaincy from Aaron Finch after the latter was ruled out of the tournament due to a knee injury. Cummins is one of the best fast bowlers in the world and will spearhead Australia’s pace attack, which also includes Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Jhye Richardson. Cummins will also have to shoulder the responsibility of leading a young and inexperienced side, which has several new faces.

Key Batsmen for Australia

Australia’s batting will depend largely on David Warner and Steve Smith, who are among the best batsmen in the world and have plenty of experience of playing in India. Warner was the leading run-scorer in the IPL 2023, scoring 692 runs for Hyderabad Sunrisers and helping them reach the playoffs. Smith was also in good touch, scoring 461 runs for Rajasthan Royals and guiding them to the final. The duo will be supported by Glenn Maxwell, Cameron Green and Alex Carey, who can provide some firepower in the middle order.

Injury Concerns for Australia

Australia also faces some injury concerns, as their main spinner Adam Zampa and their all-rounder Marcus Stoinis are doubtful for the match. Zampa suffered a hamstring strain during a practice session, while Stoinis twisted his ankle while fielding. Their availability will be decided on the morning of the match. If they are unfit, Australia may have to rely on Ashton Agar and Mitchell Marsh as their spin and all-round options.

Recent Encounters

The recent encounters between India and Australia have been closely contested, with both teams winning three matches each out of their last six ODIs. The last time they met was in March 2023, when Australia beat India by 21 runs in Chennai to win the three-match series 2-1. However, India had won the previous series in Australia by the same margin in January 2022.

Exciting Match Conditions

The match is expected to be a high-scoring affair, as both teams have explosive batsmen who can take advantage of the flat pitch and small boundaries. The weather forecast is partly cloudy with minimal rain risk, which means that there should not be any interruptions or delays. The match will start at 1:30 pm IST and will be broadcast live on Star Sports channels and Disney+Hotstar app.

A Clash of Cricket Giants

The India vs. Australia clash is poised to be a thrilling encounter that could set the tone for the entire ICC ODI World Cup 2023. Both teams have a rich history and a fierce rivalry that will add to the excitement and drama of the match. Cricket fans around the world will be eagerly watching as two cricket giants battle it out for supremacy on the biggest stage of all.

Also Read: Pitch and Weather report for MA Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai

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