Hello all, and welcome to our coverage of the ODI between India v Australia – the first of a five match series – from the M Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai.
Like most, I’m not really sure what the cricketing purpose of this series is. But there will be cricket, and the quality is bound to be good.
With the series announced about two weeks ago, both outfits will take to Chennai in half an hour and likely post something in excess of 300, whereupon it will go very close to being chased down. Does that sound cynical? It probably is. Though the 300 call seems to be on the money. Reports from the ground are that the wicket is hard and dry – very much in the mould of an Asian ODI deck. There’s a bit of cloud but it’s a win-toss-and-bat scenario.
Even these eminently forgettable games can throw forward a few sub-plots worthy of keeping an eye on. For Australia, Hilton Cartwright stands to make his debut, and may even open the batting. It amplifies a growing sense of arrival for the West Australian, who recently consolidated his spot in the Test side.
It seems a good time to list the teams for today. They line up as follows:
India (Playing XI): Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Virat Kohli(c), Manish Pandey, MS Dhoni(w), Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah
Australia (Playing XI): David Warner, Hilton Cartwright, Steven Smith(c), Travis Head, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Matthew Wade(w), James Faulkner, Pat Cummins, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Adam Zampa
Today kicks off a lengthy home season for India, who are increasingly impregnable at home. The usual suspects of Kohli, Dhoni and Sharma will lead the way with the blade, and watch out for Kuldeep Yadav, who fairly spun webs around Australia in the recent-ish Test series.
Toss news next.