After crushing the Aussies in the 1st One Day International at Chennai, Kohli and his men will be eyeing to win this 2nd One Day International match on Thursday 21th September 2017 at Eden Gardens in Kolkata.
India will look to continue their winning form and Australia will look to fight back. Even though Australia lost the first game badly, India should not underestimate the world champs due to their never say die attitude.
Like India, Australia too is capable of making great comebacks in the game. Aussies have great experienced players, like skipper Steve Smith, David Warner, Aaron Finch, Glenn Maxwell, Pat Cumins and James Faulkner. They all play in the Indian Premier League and have good experience of Indians conditions. These players are the main players for their IPL franchises. So their experience should help them to level the series at Kolkata.
But the main problem for Australia is playing against spin on the turning tracks. In Chennai, they stumbled to the spin of Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal. This spin duo of India took 5 wickets in tandem.
Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav looked more threatening than Australia’s lead spinner Adam Zampa.
Australia needs to find right balance ahead of the 2nd ODI on Thursday and will rely on David Warner. Cartwright might be replaced with Aaron Finch. Finch was out of the first ODI due to injury in Chennai.
Skipper Smith should fire in the 2nd ODI, his form at number 3 position has always been crucial for the visitors. In the first match, he scored only 1 run.
The middle order of Australia looks shaky and Matthew Wade hasn’t been contributing as a batsman for his team. But the form of Glenn Maxwell should give Australia a hope and James Faulkner’s finishing skills will power Australia for more.
James Faulkner has been a good all rounder for the Aussies but now he needs to play a role of a finisher too because after him there is not much batting left to add more runs lower down the order. He should aim to stay until the end of the 50 overs.
Australia’s weak link is spin bowling, although Adam Zampa picked up 1 wicket he was expensive in the 1st match. The visitors should pick up another spinner to support Zampa or Steve Smith should roll his arm over.
Australia leaked runs in the middle period, especially when Dhoni and Pandya repaired the innings. None of their bowlers was able to stop Pandya from his onslaught. This is a worrying sign after having a good start; Australia initially reduced India to 87 for 5.
Their strength lies in fast bowling but that too looked weak in front of Hardik Pandya and MS Dhoni. Faulkner and Pat Cumins looked distorted, only positive for Australia in bowling was Nathan Coulter Nile. He was the pick of the bowlers for the Aussies in Chennai.
Steve Smith has a lot to think before the 2nd ODI on Thursday.
The likely Playing XI for the Australians –
Australia should include Aaron Finch, Ashton Agar and Kane Richardson for the 2nd ODI in Kolkata.
David Warner, Aaron Finch, Steve Smith, Glenn Maxwell, Matthew Wade/ Peter Handscomb, James Faulkner, Nathan Coulter Nile, Kane Richardson, Ashton Agar, Adam Zampa and Pat Cummins
Ashton Agar and Kane Richardson played well in a warm up game against Board President’s XI. They should get a chance after a good show.
On the other hand, India will look to continue their winning streak. Kolkata has been a happy hunting ground for the Indians. But not against Australia, both the team have faced each other once in Eden Gardens and Australia emerged as the winners of that contest.
India will look to win their first ODI against Australia at Edens, for that they need to sort out their opening combination. Ajinkya Rahane hasn’t been playing well as an opener. KL Rahul should replace him at the opening slot.
Rahane can be fitted at number 4 slot, after Virat Kohli. Skipper Kohli too should fire at number 3 position this time around. He was out on duck in Chennai. He should be aware of Nathan Coulter Nile because he is the only bowler to dismiss Kohli twice on a duck.
Manish Pandey was the other batsman who was out for a duck. He will be eager to make a mark. He played well in Sri Lanka and he will look to continue his good form.
MS Dhoni has been the saviour for team India. He has played some good innings under pressure situations. He will look to contribute more in such times.
Hardik Pandya will look to continue his onslaught as he did in Chennai. His huge sixes were mind blowing. Pandya bowled well in that ODI too picking up two crucial wickets. Kohli will want Pandya to continue his all-round performance.
Kedar Jhadav should make up for his good start, he played well for his 40 runs in Chennai but he gave his wicket away. In Kolkata, he will be want to bat well.
The Indian bowlers are bowling well, Bumrah, Bhuvi, Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav are in good form. They should continue this in 2nd ODI at Kolkata.
Australia is on currently on 11 ODIs losing streak away from home, will this end?
The answer will be brought to you on Star Sports Networks; the match will start at 1:30 PM IST / 08:00 AM GMT. The live streaming will be available on SonyLiv and Hotstar mobile application.