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Cricwizz takes a look at the strengths and weaknesses of the two teams ahead of the second T20I between India and Australia. Nothing succeeds like success. India posted a record seventh consecutive win against Australia in T20Is and would look to stretch their record to eight matches. Besides, India have been winning anything and everything for past few months in the limited-overs format.
Right since the West Indies series, India have won 15, lost 3 in limited-overs cricket across formats. India have good bowling depth, as they are able to form two separate line-ups for Tests and limited-overs cricket. Chahal has made a bunny in Glenn Maxwell, dismissing the Australian four times in four innings. In terms of batting, India have one of the best line-ups in limited-overs cricket.
They have their regular opening pair of Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma back and both would be itching to give India a flourishing start in the second T20I. Then, skipper Virat Kohli loves batting in this format, averaging above India have lost few close limited over matches in the last two months. Opposition has put pressure by either their big hitting or tight bowling.
Hence, India are suspect against constant pressure and can lose from winning situations. Although regular skipper Steven Smith is absent due to injury, Australia boast of enough batting firepower to knock India out.
Australia must take inspiration from their Bengaluru win to put up a better show in the Guwahati T20I. Failure to maintain the tempo: Australia have been guilty of not capitalising on winning positions and letting go India off the hook.
They need to put intense pressure on India throughout the 40 overs to get the better of a strong Indian team playing in home conditions. Australia need to be ruthless in their approach or India will continue to find its way out of difficult situations. When you are on a winning momentum, you tend to become invincible. No 'cheap karma' posts or visibly annoying comments - examples are listed in the wiki.
An Englishman's bold prediction for Australia in India self. An English friend lawyer, writer, cricket fanatic has gazed into his crystal ball and seen a detailed vision of Wisden , including a full report on the 4th India-Australia Test, March Australia will become the first team in history to lose a Test by an innings despite scoring plus in each of their innings.
In consequence Australia suffered the distinction of being the first side in the history of test cricket to lose by an innings despite having scored more than runs in each of their innings. Both teams played three spinners, Agar being preferred to the unfortunate Mitchell Marsh by Australia. After Smith won the toss, Warner launched the Australian effort with customary aggression.
Undeterred by the early loss of Renshaw and Khawaja, the Australian vice-captain attacked at every opportunity and seemed to rattle the Indian bowlers who lost both length and direction. After the interval Warner was less assertive as the Indian spinners, Jayant Yadav in particular, regained their poise and raced through the overs.
Smith, however, began to pick up the slack so that the scoring rate hovered around four an over. His stand with Warner was worth almost runs when Warner was unexpectedly lured out of his ground and beaten in flight by Ashwin. The confident Handscomb, moving his feet balletically to the slow bowling, then combined with his captain in free scoring either side of tea. It was a surprise when Handscomb edged Jadeja to slip. Wade soon succumbed to Ashwin but Starc indulged in a successful late assault.
Australia were for 5 off 96 overs , with Smith undefeated on , when poor light forced a slightly early conclusion to the day. Overnight there was speculation as to whether Smith would improve on his earlier in the series but in the event a collapse of England proportions robbed him of the chance. On the second morning Starc was soon caught in the deep. The tail swiftly subsided to the spinners, vindication for those who criticized the omission of Marsh.
India were batting well before lunch. After lunch Starc continued his inconsistent way, conceding runs yet producing a beauty to account for Rahul. Pujara gave a difficult early chance to Khawaja then settled in for another smooth accumulation. Lyon was not introduced until shortly before tea when he immediately troubled Patel. Shortly after the resumption Patel cut Lyon to Handscomb in the gully. This brought in Kohli, who began circumspectly and almost immediately edged Hazlewood to Wade who dropped the ball vociferously.
Kohli soon settled and showed his shots to reach 50 before the close, again early due to bad light. At the evening press conference Kohli was asked how many runs India was aiming for. Of course, he replied, as many as possible. Ominously for Australia he added that he thought the pitch so flat that was a par score and that he would not feel secure without a run lead. Next day India added runs, of which were contributed by their captain, in 88 overs.
He enjoyed a double century stand with Nair. Careful before lunch, especially against Hazlewood, the pair accelerated in the afternoon. Only a fine piece of work by Warner parted them when Nair attempted a quick single for his hundredth run.
Soon after, Starc briefly raised Australian hopes when his yorker defeated Vijay but Ashwin steadied things either side of tea. After Ashwin had fallen to Agar, Jadeja showed the resilience of the India tail. Wade badly fumbled an opportunity to stump Jadeja off Lyon. Renshaw thought he had caught Kohli low at slip but replays proved indecisive. Kohli also survived a review for lbw off Hazlewood. India led by at the close with four wickets intact, including that of Kohli, not out.
In the end he ran out of partners when on a tantalizing Umesh Yadav and Shami thereafter brought the innings to a climax with some big hitting. Shami tried to rein in his impulses as his captain neared but succeeded only in leaving one that clipped the off stump — just reward for the excellence and perseverance of Hazlewood. Each of the Australian spinners conceded more than runs. Smith was criticized in the Australian press for not introducing Lyon earlier, for not bowling Hazlewood more, for bowling only a handful of overs himself and for not trying Warner.
The fielding, however, was found to have held up well. Renshaw again failed, concluding a miserable series for him. Warner slashed irresponsibly at a wide one from Umesh Yadav. Khawaja looked all at sea against his nemesis, Ashwin. Australia began the final day needing to make India bat again.
They had hardly progressed when Khawaja fell to Jadeja. But conditions remained benign. Smith embarked on another long stand with Handscomb. The pair constantly looked for run-scoring opportunities and maintained a tempo of better than 3 runs off each of the 34 overs sent down during the morning. Smith was rarely troubled, although he gave a sharp stumping chance half way through the morning.
The Indians squandered two reviews on optimistic leg-before appeals. After lunch the Indian spinners suddenly began to extract sharp turn from the previously comatose pitch.
Jadeja thought he had trapped Handscomb with a straight one but the umpire disagreed: Smith survived an appeal for a catch at short-leg off Ashwin but before long he edged Jadeja to the wicketkeeper. Kohli greeted Starc with both of his off-spinners and was jubilant when the batsman missed a slower ball from Jayant Yadav and was trapped in front.
The same bowler induced a rare error from Handscomb soon after. At for 6, Australia seemed doomed and the match destined for a limp conclusion. The small crowd found its voice. This bold approach deserved the luck which it attracted: Wade was put down by Nair on 18 and by Rahul on 27 and survived a borderline lbw decision.
However, immediately after dispatching Ashwin over the ropes at long on, Wade hoisted one high into the deep field where Shami made no mistake. He was joined by Agar who continued the positivity and enjoyed more good fortune as the fielders and bowlers wilted in the heat. Kohli delayed taking the new ball until just before tea, when Australia was for 7. The question was whether they could reach or last until the weather closed in.
The faster bowlers made little impression. With 80 minutes of scheduled time remaining but the light becoming dimmer and another 52 runs required to make India bat again, Hazlewood joined Agar. The latter continued to attack, taking a particular liking to Ashwin, whilst Hazlewood blocked out Jadeja. Kohli, ever active, swapped his spinners around. Eventually, with Agar on 90, Jadeja got to bowl to him. Agar blocked the first ball, then charged the second: This was followed by another forward defensive.
The fourth ball was slightly short. Agar pivoted and sent it speeding to the leg boundary. The batsman was dashing for the freedom of , just 10 runs away. Elated no doubt by the two boundaries, Agar charged at the next ball.
It was flat and fast and directed towards his feet, yet Agar was somehow able to send it skimming towards deep mid-on where Umesh Yadav was stationed. The bulky fast bowler put up his right hand, almost as a gesture of despair. The ball struck his outstretched fingers and stuck there. After a stunned pause, the crowd and the Indian fielders erupted in jubilation.
Yet for India the job was still not done.
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