India vs Australia 4th T20I: Preview and Prediction
The attention moves from Guwahati to Raipur as India is all set to take on Australia in the fourth T20I of the ongoing five-match series. After an Australian win in the last game, the series lies 2-1 in favour of the hosts. The penultimate contest of the bilateral series will be staged in the Shaheed Veer Narayan Singh International Stadium, Raipur on Friday.
Each of the three matches of the series has seen over 400 runs being piled up across both innings. While the Indian side under the stewardship of Suryakumar Yadav emerged victorious in the initial couple of matches, Australia got their taste of victory in the third T20I in the capital city of Assam.
However, it’s worth noting that Mukesh Kumar is expected to join the team ahead of the fourth T20I while pacer Deepak Chahar has been summoned for the final two games. Also, Shreyas Iyer is set to be available for the remaining contests of the series and will take the role of vice-captain of the team with a view of the 2024 ICC T20 World Cup preparations.
In the Australian camp, six players have returned home including Steve Smith, Adam Zampa, Sean Abbott, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, and Josh Inglis as the Green and Golds look to test more players ahead of the mega-tournament in June.
In their place, Ben McDermott, Ben Dwarshius, Chris Green, and Josh Phillipe have joined the squad to make up the numbers and set up a couple of interesting matches as Australia’s tour of the sub-continent finally comes to an end.
What have they done so far?
While India lost the 5-match T20I series against West Indies in August, it was followed by a convincing thrashing of the Ireland team in the same month. Since then, the Men in Blue has been playing the ODI format while the Australians defeated South Africa 3-0 in the T20I series held in August-September.
Kicking off this series, Australia scored 208 runs in the first game in Visakhapatnam yet it fared the other way around. Josh Inglis smacked a century and Steve Smith racked up a half-century in the game. However, Suryakumar Yadav’s brilliant 80 made the Aussies bowlers look toothless. Some late surge from Rinku Singh saw India win a final-over thriller to go 1-0 up.
Subsequently, another spectacular win was witnessed where a spirited performance from the Men in Blue saw them defend 235 runs successfully. The Indian spinners struck early and despite some middle order flicker, the candle did not burn for long in the Australian batting order. All-round bowling performance helped the hosts to go 2-0 up with a winning margin of 44 runs.
Despite languishing behind with two losses, the Matthew Wade-captained side toppled back the hosts in the north-eastern part of India in the third game. Maxwell’s blazing century coupled with a quickfire from Wade denied an early series win for India in Guwahati.
Head to Head Record
India and Australia have faced off in 28 T20I games altogether and the Men in Blue have the better of the Kangaroos with 17 victories. The Aussies have won eleven matches and one game was abandoned due to unfavorable climatic conditions. If filtered into the last five clashes between both nations, India stands tall with four triumphs.
Suryakumar Yadav (India): One man who played a leading role in India’s victory in the first T20I against Australia in Visakhapatnam is the captain, Suryakumar Yadav. His innings of 80 runs off 40 balls laid the path for a chase of 209 runs which was followed by a quickfire innings of 39 runs in the third T20I in Guwahati.
The interim skipper has been adapting to several phases of the game and has the ability to rattle the opposition bowlers on his day irrespective of match situations.
Jason Behrendorff (Australia): In a match that saw 222 runs get racked up, the tall and lanky pacer gave away just 12 runs from his full quota in the third T20I.
He’s a much-improved bowler in recent times and can be brilliant with the new ball as well as during the slog overs. Behrendorff will be key for Australia in batting-friendly conditions in the Indian subcontinent.
India: Ishan Kishan (wk), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shreyas Iyer, Suryakumar Yadav ©, Tilak Varma, Rinku Singh, Axar Patel, Deepak Chahar, Ravi Bishnoi, Arshdeep Singh, Mukesh Kumar
Australia: Travis Head, Aaron Hardie, Josh Phillipe, Ben McDermott, Ben Dwarshius, Mathew Wade © (wk), Chris Green, Kane Richardson, Jason Behrendorff, Nathan Ellis, Tanveer Sangha
The Indian side is likely to be bolstered by the addition of Shreyas Iyer and Mukesh Kumar for the upcoming assignment and it won’t be easy for the visitors to gain back-to-back wins without a few of their premier cricketers. Hence, India stands favorites to seal the series in Raipur.