Team India is set to take on Australia for the first match of the Test series from 17th December onwards at the Adelaide Oval.
The limited-overs series of India’s tour of Australia is over with the hosts winning the ODI series 2-1 and the visitors bouncing back in the T20I with the same 2-1 scoreline. Up next is the famous Border-Gavaskar trophy and the first Test of the four-match series between ICC’s no. 1 and no. 3 Test teams, the Aussies and the Men in Blue respectively.
The recently concluded three-day pink-ball practice series between India A and Australia A ended in a draw. Now, last time when they stepped foot in the land Down Under for the red-ball format, India made history by winning their first Test series against Australia, defeating them 2-1.
While Rohit Sharma is still unavailable until the third test, Cheteshwar Pujara, the stalwart of the last Test series against Australia is a massive plus point for the visitors, who have also picked Prithvi Shaw ahead of Shubman Gill to be paired with Mayank Agarwal. India have also picked Prithvi Shaw ahead of Shubman Gill to be paired with Mayank Agarwal as openers.
For Australia, David Warner still carries some injury concerns and Marcus Harris and Joe Burns are expected to fill in the absence of Warner. Steve Smith, who missed the last series against India, will be present for the day-night test at Adelaide and will be on the much-anticipated contest with Kohli, two of the top-ranked test batsmen in the world.
Waging odds: India (2.80) vs Australia (1.66)
India are the underdogs and are priced at 2.80, meaning if you bet ₹100 on them and if they win the match, you’ll be making ₹280.
Australia are priced at 1.66 and are the favourites. Betting ₹100 on them will earn you ₹166 if they come out as winners.
India (announced): Virat Kohli (C), Prithvi Shaw, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane (VC), Hanuma Vihari, Wriddhiman Saha (WK), Ravi Ashwin, Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami.
Australia (predicted): Marcus Harris, Joe Burns, Steve Smith, Marnus Labuschagne, Travis Head, Matthew Wade, Tim Paine(C/WK), Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood.
While India has less experience in day-night tests, their previous performance in Australia is expected to be a big plus point. Red-ball veteran Rahane returns as the vice-captain to provide the confidence boost to the team, while a strong bowling attack consisting of Ashwin, Yadav, Bumrah and Shami are expected to hit the Aussie batsmen hard.
Australia has much experience in pink-ball Tests and the home conditions will always give them the advantage to pull the odds in their favour. Along with Harris and Burns upfront, the in-form Marnus Labuschagne is expected to link up with Steve Smith to land mammoth partnerships. Cummins is set to bring the heat for the Aussie pace attack, in addition to Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood providing an equally threatening contest to Kohli and co.
Australia are expected to win the first Test and take the lead in the series.