India vs. Australia, 7th ODI: Date, Time, Live Stream, TV Info and Preview
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India and Australia face off in the finale of their gripping ODI series on Saturday, with both teams able to claim victory following India's dramatic win on Wednesday to level the series at 2-2.
Venue: M Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bangalore
Date: Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013
Start time: 08:00 GMT (13:30 local)
Live on: Sky Sports 2
Weather: Accuweather forecasts a top of 28 degrees Celsius with possible thunderstorms interrupting play throughout the day.
Drawing conclusions from this ongoing series between India and Australia is about as easy as protecting the boundary rope with five men inside the circle.
Have we witnessed the death of limited overs bowling? Is the game now skewed too heavily towards the batsmen? Is 350 the new par score? Does Virat Kohli eat spinach like Popeye?
Yet it's hard to ignore the fact that this series appears to be setting new standards for what is expected of the 50-over game.
Suddenly, the prevailing mentality appears to be that any target and any run rate are achievable with wickets in hand. Just ask Kohli, or James Faulkner, or George Bailey, or Rohit Sharma, or Shikhar Dhawan, or any other of the axe-wielding executioners in this series.
Any target, no matter how large, is achievable.
So where does that leave us heading into the seventh and final game of this compelling encounter?
Undoubtedly, Australia will be feeling rather exasperated following their six-wicket defeat on Wednesday, given that they saw another total of 350 gunned down in a fashion that can only be described as rather routine.
While the visitors may have been in awe of the home side's emphatic chase in Jaipur, the psychological blow of witnessing the same story again must have been a severe one within the Australian camp. That Australia are yet to score below 295 in the series, yet still find themselves level with the hosts, must also be disheartening for the tourists.
India, meanwhile, will head into Saturday's final game with soaring confidence, full of belief that their devastating batting lineup can overwhelm Australia once more.
India: MS Dhoni (c/wk), Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli, Amit Mishra, Suresh Raina, Ishant Sharma, Jaydev Unadkat, Yuvraj Singh, Ravi Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Ambati Rayudu, Rohit Sharma, Vinay Kumar
Australia: George Bailey (c), Xavier Doherty, Callum Ferguson, Brad Haddin (wk), Phillip Hughes, Clint McKay, Adam Voges, Nathan Coulter-Nile, James Faulkner, Aaron Finch, Moises Henriques, Glenn Maxwell, Shane Watson
India: No one on earth is batting at the level of Virat Kohli right now. While some are capable of making the difficult appear easy, Kohli is currently making the impossible seem normal. His second hundred of the series on Wednesday went close to surpassing his phenomenal effort in Jaipur, as he bludgeoned Australia into submission in remarkable circumstances once more. A repeat effort from the left-hander would essentially guarantee a series victory for the hosts.
Australia: Given that setting 350 doesn't seem to work, you can't help but feel that Australia need to start taking top-order wickets if they want to close out this Indian tour on a high. With Mitchell Johnson sent home to prepare for the Ashes, James Faulkner needs recapture his best with the ball. The left-armer has been incredibly effective in limited overs cricket with his changes of pace and ability to cramp the batsmen, but his performances in this series have been below his normal standard. If he's able to claim some top-order scalps, Australia will be favourites to take the trophy.
This final game may be capable of throwing up a few surprises, but don't expect the lingering theme of the series to drastically change.
The final match will be another run feast. In fact, there almost appears to be a resignation among the bowlers on either side that they are simply powerless against such breathtaking batting.
Given that neither has side has been able to string together consecutive triumphs, expect Australia to bat first and post a 300-plus total, which they'll narrowly defend this time around.
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