India have the second-best win-loss ratio in T20I cricket having won 70 (lost 39) of the 113 matches they have played in the format. Australia are at number 4 with a win-loss ratio of 1.115 (played 114, won 58, lost 52).
India have a good record at home having won 21 of the 34 matches they have hosted. This is the second-best record for a team at home.
Australia have played 8 matches in India and have won on only 3 occasions. They have lost 4 times to India (including the World T20 loss in Mohali) and once to New Zealand in Dharamsala (in the World T20).
Aaron Finch is the leading run-scorer for Australia in India. He has scored 197 runs in 5 innings at an average of 39.40 and strike rate of 140.71. He is followed by Glenn Maxwell (153 runs in 6 innings at 25.5 and strike rate of 135.39) and Usman Khawaja (143 runs in 4 innings at 35.75 at a rate of 137.50). Steve Smith (83 runs in 4 innings) and David Warner (48 runs in 6 innings) have a poor record in India.
James Faulkner has picked 8 wickets in 5 innings in India while Zampa is the most successful spinner with 7 scalps in 6 innings. The leg-spinner is also their most restrictive bowler with an economy of 5.87 in India.
Australia do not have a great record overall in Asia either. They have won just 13 (and lost 17) of the 31 matches they have played in the sub-continent.
India will play two T20 Internationals and five ODIs, starting February 24, in what will be their last international assignment before the World Cup, which begins in England on May 30.
The five-match ODI series will start in Hyderabad on March 2 followed by matches in Nagpur (March 5), Ranchi (March 8), Mohali (March 10) and Delhi (March 13).
The Indian management has included most of its best players in the squad as these are going to be their final 7 matches before the WC. Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Kuldeep Yadav have been rested, whereas Jasprit Bumrah returns after being rested for the limited overs fixtures against Australia and New Zealand.
Top Indian players to watch out for:
Rohit will be high on confidence after becoming the world’s highest scorer in T20s. He was in decent form in the recently concluded T20 series against New Zealand, where he scored 89 runs in 3 matches, including a fifty.
After being rested for the final 3 ODIs and T20s against New Zealand, Kohli will return to lead India against the Aussies. His aggression, hunger for runs and hatred of losing will be crucial in a series where India will need to win both the matches in order to win it.
Pant provides a wicketkeeping and finishing option to the team, in case MS Dhoni suffers an injury. He was in good form against NZ as well, where he scored 81 runs in 3 matches.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni
The legendary wicketkeeper regained his lost touch against Australia and New Zealand. He has a good chance to regain his form against Australia. And playing at home provides him with a perfect chance to do so.
Also, with his place in the WC fixed, he will also play a crucial role behind the stumps and in guiding young players.
As its final experiment, India also has included Mayank Markande, Umesh Yadav and Siddarth Kaul. Vijay Shankar and KL Rahul have also been included in the squad, while Dinesh Karthik has been left out.
India’s squad for T20I series:
Virat Kohli (Capt), Rohit (vc), KL Rahul, Shikhar Dhawan, Rishabh Pant, Dinesh Karthik, MS Dhoni (WK), Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Vijay Shankar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Umesh Yadav, Sidharth Kaul, Mayank Markande
India’s squad for 1st and 2nd ODI:
Virat Kohli (Capt), Rohit Sharma (vc), Shikhar Dhawan, Ambati Rayudu, Kedar Jadhav, MSD (wk), Hardik Pandya, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohamed Shami, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Vijay Shankar, Rishabh Pant, Siddharth Kaul, KL Rahul
India’s squad for remaining three ODIs:
Virat Kohli (Capt), Rohit Sharma (vc), Shikhar Dhawan, Ambati Rayudu, Kedar Jadhav, MSD (wk), Hardik Pandya, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Vijay Shankar, KL Rahul, Rishabh Pant