About the Match
Having already won the Border-Gavaskar Trophy 2-0 against India, Australia won’t be much worried about the outcome of the final test at Sydney that starts on 6th Jan, but they are not ones to allow the opponents have it easy. They will try to further demoralize the Indians by defeating them in the final test to deal them with a heavy blow in terms of the psychological advantage before the world cup. However, Australia was definitely on the back foot towards the beginning of the proceedings on the final day of the 3rd Test, which is a positive signal for the Indians, who will muster up all courage to come back stronger and score a face-saving win here.
India did well to draw the 3rd test which demonstrated their will to survive; Dhoni and Ashwin held the defense solidly denying the Aussies the slightest chance of a win. The dependable innings by Rahane and a flamboyant knock by Kohli in the first innings brought respect to the batting line up; Kohli was in good form and ensured that the advantage does not go to the Aussies facing such a mammoth total, which usually takes the opponent to a submissive approach. The classic stroke play also ensured that Australia couldn’t take anything for granted by under estimating the capabilities of the Indian batting line up; with Kohli back on the helms to dictate the proceedings after Dhoni’s decision to make way for the younger lot, the team comprising of bowlers like Ashwin, Ishant, Sami and Yadav will certainly try to exploit the conditions at Sydney and try and force a win. If India can wind up the lower order of the Australians, they might have a chance.
The consistency of the Australian batting line up is questionable except for Smith; it was only the unexpected resistance of the tail and some mindless bowling strategy by Indian bowlers which allowed them to dominate in the 1st innings at Melbourne. India will certainly take note of these weak links, and try to expose the Australian cracks; Warner is vulnerable and only Smith and Marsh could hold the innings. Australians are good strategists and they understand the opponent well; hence they will try to execute their plans for every individual as seen till now. However, if they aren’t able to handle a critical situation, it may lead them to disaster. Australia may try some new hands to test their bench strength with competent players for the world cup that starts a few days after this test series.
We expect a very interesting match at Gabba provided the rain does not hold the game during the first 3 days; the home side will like to tighten the noose but the visitors are well equipped to come out of the shackles and square up.
India, 7.00 @ Bet365