Clint Mckay and James Faulkner steamed in with the hot afternoon sun on their backs. For the next 20 minutes, both bowlers went full tilt at Phillip Jacques and Aaron Finch and the plan seemed simple enough -- both Mckay and Faulkner peppered the batsmen with short deliveries. Slower bouncers and quick deliveries which reared off the practice pitches as both bowlers followed a set plan.
During the Yuvraj Singh-led blitz in the one-off T20, the Australian bowlers were guilty of bowling too full a length, thereby allowing the Indian batsmen to drive and loft. Here, Ahead of the series opener at the MCA stadium in Pune, changing tracks was the order of the day. With pitches likely to assist batsmen though the seven-match series, the bowlers will be called upon to stem the run-flow using everything in their armory.
Another factor that will worry Australian skipper George Bailey, who has never played an ODI series in India, is the gulf in experience between the two sides. The combined number of caps for the entire Australian squad stands at 627 while MS Dhoni, Suresh Raina and Yuvraj Singh alone have played a total of 684 games.
The Australian captain, like most visiting captains, made the customary remark about India’s batting strength, saying, “They are a very well balanced side with a very deep and strong batting line-up. We cannot make the mistake of focussing on one guy because someone else can jump up and hurt you,” Bailey said.
Incidentally, Australia have never lost a seven-match ODI series in history and also come in with an unblemished record as far as ODI series victories over India in India go.
Most of the Indian batting is in relatively good nick, Rohit Sharma, the side’s newest opener along with Shikhar Dhawan, though has a point to prove after enduring a rather lean tour of Zimbabwe. Sharma, scored only one half-century in four outings, twice squandering away starts.
For Australia though, Aaron Finch, after his pyrotechnics in the Twenty20 at Rajkot, is expected to be tasked with providing a strong foundation at the top. The rest of