Australia seek redemption in India as Steve Smith returns as captain in place of Pat Cummins
Australia will hope to find their competitive edge in the third Test against India for the Border-Gavaskar Trophy 2022-23, starting on the 1st of March at the Holkar Stadium in Indore as Steve Smith is all set to lead the side again with Pat Cummins ruled out of the contest.
Pat Cummins had returned home to be with his ailing mother in Sydney who has been on palliative care and informed cricket Australia later on that he will not be able to make it on time to join the Australia squad in New Delhi for the third Test, hence Steve Smith will once again be captaining the Australian cricket team in Test cricket.
The last time Steve Smith captained Australia in Test cricket in India, both these teams played out and intensely fought Test series during the 2016-17 season, in which Australia took a 1-0 lead by winning the first Test in Pune by 333 runs and India bounced back with wins in Bangalore and Dharamsala to take the series 2-1.
Australia are already 0-2 behind with India winning the first two Test matches of the series in Nagpur and New Delhi, and it is imperative that they put out their best effort in the remainder of the series and fight hard, something that is expected from the world No 1 ranked team.
The Australian batsmen have looked clueless so far in the series against the Indian spin trio of Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja and Akshar Patel, who have made the most difference in the outcome of the first two Test matches so far. Australia have also tried to imitate India’s policy of playing three spin bowlers, but what they have missed dearly is runs from their batsmen, particularly Steve Smith, Marnus Labuschagne, Matthew Renshaw and a few others.
As the opening pair Australia have a new set of Usman Khawaja and Travis Head with David Warner ruled out for the remainder of the series, and in the bowling department, the visitors are all set to bring back Mitchell Starc with Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood not available for this Test match.
Australia will also be bolstered with the return of the star all-rounder Cameron Green who has proven how much winning player for them in the past but it remains to be seen how the bulky right-handed batsman and bowler fares in challenging conditions in India, especially against quality spin bowling which has kept the beds of biggest guns in the team, Steve Smith and Marnus Labuschagne, quiet.