After successfully concluding the Test series and retaining the Border Gavaskar Trophy, Team India will now host Australia in a three-match ODI series starting March 17, 2023, at the iconic Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. This will be India’s last bilateral series before the players get started with the sixteenth edition of the Indian Premier League.
The series will be crucial for both India and Australia, but the visitors will try to make the most out of it so as to get themselves acquainted with the Indian conditions and prepare well for the World Cup scheduled in India later this year.
Hardik takes the leadership onus
The last time Australia played an ODI against India in India, the two sides squared off at the same venue, the Wankhede Stadium, in the first game of their series. Though the Aussies won the first game, India won the remaining two to clinch the series 2-1.
Rohit Sharma will lead the side with Hardik Pandya as his deputy whereas, for Australia, Steve Smith will be donning the captain’s hat in the absence of Pat Cummins. The Men in Blue will be looking to clinch the ODI series as well and keep their winning form in white-ball bilateral games going.
Pitch and conditions
Wankhede’s surface has previously proven to be high-scoring. The last time India and Australia met each other at the venue, India managed to post only 255 runs, and Australian openers chased it down with ease to win by 10 wickets. Thus, the batters will be benefitted while both spinners and pacers will receive equal assistance.
Venue details: Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai
Last ODI match at the venue: IND- 255/10 (49.1 overs) | AUS- 258/0 (37.4 overs)
Here’s the probable playing XI for India vs Australia clash:
Rohit Sharma is set to miss the first ODI due to family commitments. In his absence, Hardik Pandya will be leading the Men in Blue. Shreyas Iyer suffered a back injury during the fourth Test of the recently concluded series, due to which he will be out of the ODI series.
The Australian side is backed with three consecutive ODI victories, which will boost their confidence going into the series against India. It will be interesting to see Australia’s second pacer option alongside Mitchell Starc. David Warner will return to international cricket after missing a major part of the Test series due to hairline fracture he endured in the Delhi Test.