The last time India lost three consecutive T20Is was in the latter half of 2015, and they will be keen to avoid a repeat knowing winning momentum is the key ahead of the much-anticipated forthcoming World Cup. India might not be at their full strength but will also know that Australia, too, is not at theirs. Coming into the T20 series, it is no secret that every cricket pundit expected India to clinch the series comprehensively, but after what Australia has produced; the men-in-blue will surely look for redemption in the second T20 which is scheduled to happen on 27th February at M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru.
In the pre-match press conference, India all-rounder Krunal Pandya confidently assured that the team will come back hard and do everything to square the series and get back to winning ways. Pat Cummins, on the other hand, believes that Australia will look to continue their winning momentum and win their first T20 series in Australia.
With this, the upcoming encounter is expected to catch everyone’s eyes in more ways than one.
For India, it is expected that Shikhar Dhawan will replace Rohit Sharma in playing eleven, and accompany KL Rahul for the opening slot. Kohli will be followed by MS Dhoni and Rishabh Pant. Further, it is expected that Vijay Shankar will replace Dinesh Karthik. Also, seeing at the boundary sizes, the team management may be tempted to play an extra pacer.
Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Virat Kohli (c), MS Dhoni (wk), Rishabh Pant, Krunal Pandya, Vijay Shankar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Umesh Yadav, and Mayank Markande/Siddharth Kaul.
It is highly unlikely that Australians will tinker with their winning eleven. With this, it is expected that Marcus Stoinis will open with in-form D Arcy Short. Aaron Finch, Glenn Maxwell, Peter Handscomb will occupy third, fourth, and fifth spot respectively. While the only change Australia might do is to make a pacer sit out and get Kane Richardson in.
Aaron Finch (c), Marcus Stoinis, D Arcy Short, Peter Handscomb (wk), Glenn Maxwell, Nathan Coulter Nile, Ashton Turner, Pat Cummins, Kane Richardson, Jason Behrendorff, Adam Zampa.
Who will win?
Though Australia may have sealed last-ball win against India in the last encounter, going ahead it is expected that India will switch the table back to their reign and deliver what they are expected of. At M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, India carries a good record and will look to make it even better. In the Head to Head statistics, India leads T20 format convincingly having won 11 out of 19 games. This remains to be seen if India can make the tally go up to 12.
Pitch and Ground
M. Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru is known for its’ short boundaries, which leads even the untimed shots to go over the boundary rope. With this, more runs than Vizag is almost assured if the batsmen are not too reckless. The pitch wears a nice green tinge and may help the fast bowlers too.
Stadium and Time
M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru at 7 p.m (IST)