3rd T20I Preview: India eye clean sweep; Australia look to take winning momentum into Test series


Team India will count on the massive crowd support with a packed house at the Sydney Cricket Ground in the final game of the three-match T20I series on Tuesday and would want to win the series staying unbeaten.

After winning the first two T20Is banking on complete team performances, India have the momentum and would want to repeat the 3-0 success, which MS Dhoni’s team had in the 2016 series on Australian soil.

On the other hand, Australia after winning the first two ODIs, haven’t looked the part since, with obviously missing some of their key personnel. With the likes of David Warner, Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins missing and now with Aaron Finch and Josh Hazlewood too no there, Australia’s second-string side even though has given tough competition to India,¬†has faltered at the crunch moments.

India, too, without their two white-ball stars in Rohit Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah have won the T20 series, with newer and younger players putting their hand up.

The contributions from Ravindra Jadeja in the first game and from Shikhar Dhawan, Kohli himself and Hardik Pandya’s late onslaught in the second, India have found ways to come back or stay in the games through different heroes each time.

And, in bowling, while the spinners ruled the roost in the first game, T Natarajan has impressed one and all with his skills and pace variations and was the most economical bowler for the men in blue in the second.

For Australia, Matthew Wade took to captaincy like fish to water, at least as a batsman. As, Finch’s absence meant Wade went up the order, his preferred batting position in this format, and played a belligerent innings of 58 before getting out to a comical dismissal.

Henriques and Smith have chipped in with useful contributions throughout, but in absence of all their lead bowlers, they need the likes of Andrew Tye, Daniel Sams and Sean Abbott to take responsibility, especially in the death overs.

Since, the focus of the tour has remained on the upcoming four-match test series, both the teams have rested their lead fast bowlers and managed their workload to get them up and ready for the longest format starting next week.

Probable Playing XIs

India: Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul(w), Virat Kohli, Sanju Samson, Shreyas Iyer, Hardik Pandya, Washington Sundar, Deepak Chahar, Shardul Thakur, T Natarajan, Yuzvendra Chahal

Australia: Matthew Wade(w/c), D’Arcy Short, Steven Smith, Moises Henriques, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Sean Abbott, Daniel Sams, Adam Zampa, Andrew Tye, Mitchell Swepson

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