Coating the souls in colours of patriotism on Republic Day, the men in blue are at the verge of their first T20 encounter against Australia in Adelaide. India limited overs captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni would be looking for a prospect to prove his position in the squad, after a humiliating 4-1 defeat against the Aussies in the ODI series.
Dhoni’s current form shows him in troubled waters as he managed to stay on the crease for just 77 balls through the series. Contrary to his past performances, he scored a total of 86 runs.
The right-handed batsman from Ranchi stands well known for his leadership skills. However, the fans couldn’t witness a single instance of ‘what he used to be’ throughout the series. Is Dhoni now a shadow of his past?
In an attempt to regain lost pride, Dhoni & co. will look to clinch the quick format series with the help of forgotten heroes like Yuvraj Singh, Ashish Nehra and Harbhajan Singh. Amidst expectations and hopes to triumph, Indian fans will witness more than just a little spark in the stadium.
Adelaide and T20 cricket:
The Adelaide Oval in Australia is 190.2m long and 126.2m wide in playing area, with a capacity of 50,000 spectators. However, this 143 year old stadium has witnessed Australia play only two T20 international matches. Both times, Australia faced disappointment. In 2011, England trumped them by 1 wicket and later, in 2014, South Africa registered a 7-wicket win over them.
South African allrounder – Rilee Rossouw, with 78 runs, is currently the highest scorer here. Yuvraj would be eyeing to break this record on his return to the Indian side. Shane Watson’s mystic 15/4 remains the best in bowling figures at The Adelaide Oval, which he would look to improve if he plays. Amidst all these statistics, it will be interesting to watch this battle of all-rounders as they look to outperform each other and break previous records.
Probable Playing XI:
India: MS Dhoni (C/WK), Virat Kohli (VC), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina, Yuvraj Singh, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja/Hardik Pandya, Ashish Nehra, Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah.
Australia: Aaron Finch (C), Steve Smith (VC), David Warner, Shane Watson, Matthew Wade(WK), James Faulkner, Chris Lynn, Scott Boland, Kane Richardson/Cameron Boyce, John Hastings, Shaun Tait.
Akash Khanna | FYS