Australia captain Aaron Finch called correctly at the coin toss and opted to bowl first against India in the second ODI at the Saurashtra Cricket Stadium in Rajkot on Friday.
Australia have kept the winning combination intact for this match but India have made two changes – one forced in Rishabh Pant who has been replaced by Manish Pandey and the other being Shardul Thakur making way for Navdeep Saini.
KL Rahul will keep the wickets for India.
Australia lead the three-match series 1-0 having recorded a dominating 10-wicket win in the series opener at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Tuesday. David Warner and Finch both scored unbeaten centuries in chase of 256, a target they easily overhauled in 37.4 overs.
India captain Virat Kohli said he would have wanted to bat first but feels enough runs and the hosts will be able to defend them. “It looks really nice and hard. If we put enough runs on the board, we have a good chance of defending. You will be beaten comprehensively by sides like Australia at the International level. It’s about understanding what went wrong. We need to focus on the positives. We are going to be more brave than the last game,” he said.
India have added Andhra wicketkeeper KS Bharat as a cover for Rishabh who is not playing this ODI after being diagnosed with concussion. He’s at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru where he’s undergoing rehab.
A call on Pant’s availability for the third ODI will be taken later.
The pitch is expected to be a batting paradise and Indian batsmen will be looking to make amends on it after suffering a collapse in Mumbai. “It’s such a beautiful pitch to bat on. There is a little bit of grass, but it’s not going to matter at all,” batting legend Sunil Gavaskar said during his pitch report.
India: Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli (captain), KL Rahul (wk), Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Ravindra Jadeja, Navdeep Saini, Mohammed Shami, Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah
Australia: David Warner, Aaron Finch (captain), Marnus Labuschagne, Steven Smith, Ashton Turner, Alex Carey (wk), Ashton Agar, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Kane Richardson, Adam Zampa