Sydney, Nov 24: The Virat Kohli-led Indian side faces a must-win situation against Australia in the third and final Twenty20 International of the rubber at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) here on Sunday. After failing to cross the line in the rain-hit first T20I, the visitors showed terrific comeback to restrict Australia at a moderate total in the second contest before rain washed out India's chance to level the series as the visitors didn't even face a single ball.
The Indian bowlers came out all guns blazing in Melbourne and Kohli will once again like them to replicate the show. Opener Shikhar Dhawan, who played a classy knock of 76 off 42 deliveries in Brisbane, showed the kind of havoc he could create and it is expected of him to blast again for one final time in the series.
Unlike Dhawan, his partner Rohit Sharma failed to fire in the first game, but the opener is an experienced campaigner, and it is a matter of just a few deliveries for him to click. India vs Australia 2018 Video Diaries: KL Rahul Meets Fans at Melbourne Cricket Ground After 2nd T20I.
Meanwhile, in the first game, the ploy of promoting Rahul to the No.3 slot didn't work, and the team management could restore the skipper to his usual batting position.
The middle order looks settled with stumper Rishabh Pant and Dinesh Karthik in good nick. The duo came out all guns blazing in Brisbane, and their knocks brought the visitors back in the hunt while chasing a challenging total.
However, Pant's inexperience was visible as the Delhi stumper played an unwanted and completely immature shot to throw his wicket. India vs Australia, 2nd T20I 2018 Highlights: Match Abandoned Called Off Due to Rain, Australia Lead Series 1-0!
Coming to India's bowling, pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar was accurate with the leather after conceding just 20 runs from his three overs besides picking up a couple of wickets. Jasprit Bumrah also bowled well with figures of 1/20 from four overs.
Also, K Khaleel Ahmed, who was clobbered for 55 runs in Brisbane, showed signs of improvement after scalping two wickets for 39 runs from four overs.
On the other hand, Australia would once again expect fireworks from Glenn Maxwell and all-rounder Marcus Stoinis, who failed in the last contest. The all-rounder was useful both with the bat and ball in Brisbane and would like to repeat it.
Ben McDermott also showed he could be a surprise package for the visitors after a sensible 30-ball 32 in Melbourne. Likely India XI of 3rd T20I vs Australia: Virat Kohli Should Drop KL Rahul and Khaleel Ahmed, Include Manish Pandey and Yuzvendra Chahal To Win in Sydney.
Also, Adam Zampa proved beneficial for the host in the first game, and the Australian team management will once again hope their side replicate the Brisbane show here.
India - Virat Kohli (Captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, Manish Pandey, Shreyas Iyer, Dinesh Karthik (Wicket-keeper), Rishabh Pant, Krunal Pandya, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Umesh Yadav, Khaleel Ahmed, Washington Sundar.
Australia: Aaron Finch (Captain), Ashton Agar, Jason Behrendorff, Alex Carey (Wicket-keeper), Nathan Coulter-Nile, Chris Lynn, Ben McDermott, Glenn Maxwell, D'Arcy Short, Billy Stanlake, Marcus Stoinis, Andrew Tye, Adam Zampa.