It is do or die for India as they take on Australia in the sixth One-Day International (ODI) at the Vidharba Cricket Association Stadium, Jamtha, Nagpur. The tourists are leading the series 2-1 with the last two ODIs at Ranchi and Cuttack being washed out due to rain. Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s men would know that they have a task on their hands as this Australian unit is a strong one-day side.
It would be interesting to see the bowling attack India fields on the day. Shami Ahmed came in and did well in the previous game. However, the axing of Bhuvneshwar Kumar was a bit surprising as he has been economical in this series. Perhaps he may return in place of a Jaydev Unadkat or R Vinay Kumar.
Ravichandran Ashwin had also had a tough time and there is a clamour for the inclusion of Amit Mishra. These are some of the tough calls Dhoni faces before he picks his final XI for the game.
At the same time, India’s batting is strong with Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli forming the top three. There is a bit of a question over the number four spot as Suresh Raina hasn’t done much so far to assert himself there. Yuvraj Singh may actually be pushed up the order to that spot or even Dhoni may consider himself for the role. Ravindra Jadeja would be the all-rounder and is set at number seven.
Australia would be thrilled with their effort so far and have a few batsmen in good form. Aaron Finch leads the way at the top followed by George Bailey and Adam Voges in the middle. They would want someone like a Shane Watson to come good as he can be a game-changer.
The batting line-up should remain the same. In the bowling too, James Faulkner, Clint McKay and Mitchell Johnson form a potent pace attack. There may only be concerns over Xavier Doherty’s role in the squad.
It is a test for India as they have to win this game to keep themselves alive going into the final ODI at Bangalore.