India vs. Australia, Only T20: Date, Time, Live Stream, TV Info and Preview
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What: India v Australia, one-off Twenty20 international
When: Thursday Oct 10, 14.30BST
Live Stream/TV info: Sky Sports 2, 14.30 – 18.30BST
Mahendra Singh Dhoni (capt and wk), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina, Yuvraj Singh, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ranganath Vinay Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Jaydev Unadkat, Amit Mishra, Ambati Rayudu
George Bailey (capt), Nathan Coulter-Nile, Xavier Doherty, James Faulkner, Aaron Finch, Brad Haddin (wk), Moises Henriques, Phil Hughes, Mitchell Johnson, Glenn Maxwell, Clint McKay, Adam Voges, Shane Watson, Callum Ferguson
The tourists arrive in India on the back of their recent mammoth tour of the UK, which saw them suffer plenty of reverses during their three-month stay across all three forms of the game.
However, T20 skipper George Bailey did manage to lend to some respectability to proceedings by leading the Aussies to a shared series in this shorter format, with the two-match head to head finishing 1-1.
And the highlight of both games was without doubt the world-record score made by big-hitting opener Aaron Finch in the first match in Hampshire, when the left-handed batsman smashed his way to a quite incredible 156 from just 63 balls, a knock that included 14 sixes and 11 fours as Australia won by 39 runs (see video).
As for the home side, well they have incredibly not played a single T20 international this year, although all of their players have of course been heavily involved in both the Indian Premier League as well as the more recent ICC Champions League.
But the last time India played a T20 international was their much-anticipated two-match home series against arch-rivals Pakistan last December, with the spoils being shared 1-1, as they also were when MS Dhoni’s men hosted England earlier that month.
Most sixes by a player from India in T20s: Rohit Sharma 170, Suresh Raina 168, Yusuf Pathan 151, Yuvraj Singh 148, MS Dhoni 135, Uthappa 117— Cricket Record (@cricinfo_record) October 7, 2013
With the hosts, it really is a tough task to identity a particular key man, especially among the batsmen, where Dhoni is able to call upon big hitters of the calibre of opener Shikhar Dhawan, middle-order batsmen Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina and yet again the recalled and in-form Yuvraj Singh.
However, perhaps their most important player will be all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja, a devastating middle-to-lower-order batsman and a cunning spin bowler that can be hard to get away at the best of times.
Meanwhile for the tourists, in the absence of injured skipper Michael Clarke, the Aussies will no doubt be looking for some early-innings momentum from that man Finch at the top of the order. But equally as with India, the all-round skills of Shane Watson should prove crucial to the outcome of this game.
Meanwhile, it will also prove fascinating to see if Mitchell Johnson’s recent good form in England continues on the flat dust bowls of the subcontinent.
overjoyed to see @YUVSTRONG12 back in the side; did everything asked of him. 5 quicks & 3 spinners too many. would have had karthik/pujara— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) September 30, 2013
Weather: It looks like it will be another hot one in the southern Indian city of Rajkot on Thursday, with temperatures ranging between a minimum of 24 and a maximum of 29 degrees Celsius, with there also being a slight chance of some rain due to the extreme humidity in the area.
Pitch: When England played a one-day international in Rajkot back in January, it turned out to be one of the flattest surfaces seen for a long time in international cricket, with a mammoth 641 runs scored in the 100 overs played, so expect another belter on Thursday.
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