Australian skipper, Steve Smith won the toss and opted to field first in the second match of the three-match ODI series against India, here at the Dr YS Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium in Visakhapatnam.
Like they were earlier this month in the 2023 Border Gavaskar Trophy, Australia find themselves in a perform-or-perish situation yet again, with India being a victory away from sealing the fate of the series. The first match saw the visitors succumbing to a five-wicket defeat.
Smith announced two changes to his team, as Alex Carey and Nathan Ellis replaced Josh Inglis and Glenn Maxwell respectively. Carey, the team’s first-choice wicketkeeper-batter, returns to the side after recovering from an injury, while Maxwell was declared unfit to feature in this encounter.
“(This is a) different surface, been under covers for a while. Might do something. Just a partnership through the middle would have helped us. It's good learning for us playing on these surfaces,” Smith said after the toss.
From the Indian perspective, Rohit Sharma is back in the team after missing the first game owing to personal commitments. He replaces Ishan Kishan, whilst spin-bowling all-rounder Axar Patel, who was in good form during the Test series, has been included in Shardul Thakur’s place.
In terms of their preparation for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023, the last few months have seen the perfectly smooth sailing of the Indian crusade. The two-time world champions embarked on the preparatory mission with a 3-0 clean sweep against Sri Lanka, before inflicting the same treatment on the Kiwis.
India: Rohit Sharma (c), Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, KL Rahul (wk), Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Siraj, Mohammed Shami.
Australia: Travis Head, Mitchell Marsh, Steven Smith (c), Marnus Labuschagne, Alex Carey (wk), Cameron Green, Marcus Stoinis, Sean Abbott, Nathan Ellis, Mitchell Starc, Adam Zampa.