India Vs Australia ODI series
India now turns its attention to the ODI against Australia, which will be their final three 50-over matches before the month of July, after regaining the Border-Gavaskar Trophy by winning a difficult Test series 2-1. Also, every series is an opportunity to fine-tune their finest lineup because the World Cup will be held at home in October and November.
After victories over Sri Lanka and New Zealand in ODIs played at home to start the year 2023, several regulars who were absent for those series, including Ravindra Jadeja and KL Rahul, are now available. There is no set return date for other injured players like Shreyas Iyer, Jasprit Bumrah, and Rishabh Pant.
The following are some of the most important queries regarding India’s lineup for the ODI series against Australia:
Would Suryakumar Yadav be able to play now that Shreyas Iyer is out?
In 20 innings, Shreyas has scored 805 runs at an average of 47.35, with two hundred and five half-centuries. But, injuries have become an issue recently. Due to a recurrence of the same back issue, he is no longer able to play in the Australia series. He missed the ODIs against New Zealand due to back stiffness.
During the New Zealand series, Suryakumar Yadav filled in for Shreyas, scoring 31 and 14 in his two innings. He hasn’t been able to translate his explosive and reliable T20I form into ODIs, though.
Has Ishan Kishan resumed serving as a backup opener?
Rahul and Ishan Kishan will compete with Suryakumar for positions in the middle order. The middle-order batsman Kishan struggled to build on his record-breaking fastest ODI double-ton against Bangladesh in December when he played throughout the New Zealand series.
After that performance, it was widely believed that Kishan would replace Shubman Gill as India’s starting opener. This decision by the team management to stick with Shubman Gill has paid off. In the first ODI, Kishan is set to open alongside Gill in Rohit Sharma’s absence, but once Rohit comes back, he might revert to being a reserve opener.
It will be more difficult for Kishan to play when Rohit returns unless the team management chooses him ahead of Suryakumar in the middle order. This is because Gill has scores of 70, 21, 116, 208, 40*, and 112 in six ODI innings this year—all as an opener.
Rahul, the backup keeper in Pant’s absence?
Coincidentally, Rahul was first taken into consideration as a regular wicketkeeping option in white-ball cricket in January 2020, when Australia last played India for ODIs. Rahul seized the opportunity after Pant suffered a concussion in the series opener in Mumbai by playing some outstanding glovework and aggressive middle-order batting. Rahul’s 52-ball 80 at No. 5 helped India tie the series before they won it 2-1.
Since then, Rahul has established himself as a reliable keeper in white-ball cricket, even filling in for his previous IPL team, Kings XI Punjab. Rahul has scored 658 runs at an average of 50.61 and a strike rate of 102.17 in 16 innings for India at No. 5, with 106 fifty-plus scores. Rahul will be eager to capitalise on his developing middle-order credentials in the ODI format after losing his Test position to Gill.
What all-rounder lineup works best for India?
Striking a balance between sufficient bowling options and sufficient batting depth is one of the important considerations India must make. In the New Zealand series, Washington Sundar and Shardul Thakur successfully filled Jadeja’s position as a bowling all-rounder.
India’s batting depth can be further improved with the return of Jadeja, especially if all three players—Hardik Pandya, Washington, and Jadeja—play (Axar Patel is an option as well).
They will need to fill three bowling positions as a result. Thakur’s batting at No. 9 could either be sacrificed for Umran Malik’s bristling pace or Jaydev Unadkat’s left-arm variety, or they may stick with Thakur, Mohammed Shami, and Mohammed Siraj.
They might also choose to place Thakur at No. 8 and one of Washington or Jadeja at No. 7, respectively. As Shami, Siraj, and Malik compete for two positions, they will be able to play a wristspinner like Yuzvendra Chahal or Kuldeep Yadav. Or they can choose two spinning all-rounders, a wristspinner, two specialised fast bowlers, and Hardik Pandya as a third seam bowler if they decide the conditions call for three spinners and only two quicks.