Paceman Jason Behrendorff will make his long-awaited global debut in Australia's T20 against India in Ranchi tonight. Gone. Australia 3 down. I'm getting more confidence day by day and game.
If he is absent for the match with India, vice-captain David Warner is likely to deputise in the skipper's role. Smith failed to recreate his form from the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, earlier in the year, and scored a mere 142 runs in five matches. But soon, in-form Finch and Glenn Maxwell (17) stabilised the Australian innings and forged a 47-run partnership for the second wicket.
With Aaron Finch and Glenn Maxwell on the crease, Australia were seen struggling at 8/1 in the first over.
Kohli announced two changes in the playing XI from the last game - Kuldeep Yadav replaced Axar Patel and Shikhar Dhawan came in place of Ajinkya Rahane. Finch was in two minds; whether to respond with a sweep or play it through the "V".
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Smith has been unable to bat or throw without discomfort since landing on his right shoulder during that match, forcing the selectors to call in Marcus Stoinis as his replacement for the three T20 fixtures.
Paceman Jasprit Bumrah (2-17) returned to bowl Tim Paine (17) and Nathan Coulter-Nile (1) in the closing stages, meaning Australia had lost six wickets for 38 runs. The duo stitched a couple of solid partnerships in the ODIs and their contribution at the top will be key to Australia's chances, given their inconsistent middle order.
Allrounders Dan Christian and Moises Henriques have also flown in for the T20 series. When Kane Richardson was missing in the 5th ODI, the lack of intensity was manifested in the bowling department as spells from Cummins & Coulter Nile alone couldn't enforce the pressure on India.
India (Playing 11): 1 Rohit Sharma, 2 Shikhar Dhawan, 3 Virat Kohli (capt), 4 Manish Pandey, 5 MS Dhoni (wk), 6 Kedar Jadhav, 7 Hardik Pandya, 8 Bhuvneshwar Kumar, 9 Kuldeep Yadav, 10 Yuzvendra Chahal, 11 Jasprit Bumrah.