Ind vs Aus: Another Spin track awaits as Ranchi gears up for Test Debut

The Bengaluru Test Match showcased the skill, grit, and determination of the World #1 Test team, who despite being done and dusted in the first innings came back strongly to snatch a 75-run victory. The Bengaluru victory sets the stage perfectly for the third clash in Ranchi, which is set to become the 26th Test Venue of India.

 

Australia Team News

Since the start of India's Second Innings in Bengaluru, Australia have run into some serious trouble. First, they lost the Test match by 75-runs and now their sub-continent campaign is plagued with injuries to key players like Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, and Mitchell Marsh.

While Starc (stress fracture) and Marsh (shoulder injury) have been ruled out of the remaining tour, Lyon, who is battling an injury to his spinning finger, is confident of playing in the third Test. Pat Cummins and Marcus Stoinis will replace Starc and Marsh respectively. Marsh's injury has opened up the all-rounder spot with Maxwell, Stoinis and Ashton Agar competing for the lone spot.

 

India Team News

India, brimming with confidence after Bengaluru win, didn't tinker much with their squad for the rest of the two matches- leaving out only Hardik Pandya, who has a shoulder issue to address. Murali Vijay, who was ruled out of the Second Test with a shoulder injury, is expected to join KL Rahul as his opening partner.

Considering the batting mayhem in Pune, India went to Bengaluru with an extra batsman in Karun Nair but with the reports of Ranchi pitch being spin friendly, India might be tempted to include Jayant Yadav in the squad.

 

India vs Australia Ranchi test – Key Players

David Warner: Australian Vice-Captain, along with Smith, has been instrumental in the re-incarnation of this Australian Team after a horrible start to the home summer. Warner had a couple of starts in this series but he failed to convert them into big ones which ultimately came to haunt his team in Bengaluru. With a tally of 98 runs from 4 innings, Warner will be restless to go out and score big in Ranchi.

Virat Kohli: With the scores of 0, 13, 12 and 15, Virat Kohli's four trips to the crease this series amount to a total of 40 runs which resulted in his batting average going below fifty and his ranking slipping to fourth spot in the batting charts. Though he relished the fact that other players are taking responsibility and winning matches for the team but Kohli is a type of player who is consistently hungry for runs and will be looking to stamp his authority in Ranchi.

 

India vs Australia, Rachi Pitch-talk

Pitch continues to be a debating point half-way through the series. It was earlier reported that Jharkhand State Cricket Association (JSCA) has prepared three tracks for the third test- One with ample grass cover, the second one with a moderate grass covering while the third one with no grass cover at all.

The third one is expected to be a dry stretch with no bounce at all. Ever since, MS Dhoni, the local boy, visited the pitch and offered his inputs, the pitch has attracted the eyeballs of the entire cricketing fraternity. Previously, the hosts were to choose the pitch two days ahead of the Test but reports are coming that they might go for the third one which creates a kind of selection conundrum in deciding whether to go for an extra spinner or an extra batsman.

 

Stats

  • Steve Smith (4896 runs) needs only 104 runs to complete his 5000 test runs. He will become the twentieth Australian to achieve the milestone.
  • Ravi Ashwin is 134 runs short of his 2000 test runs. His tally currently stands at 1866 runs.
  • Murali Vijay (49*) is set to become the 29th player to represent India in 50 or more Tests.  

 

India vs Australia, 3rd Test, Ranchi Squad 

India: KL Rahul, Murali Vijay, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli(C), Ajinkya Rahane, Wriddhiman Saha(Wk), Ravi Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Umesh Yadav, Ishant Sharma, Abhinav Mukund, Karun Nair, Jayant Yadav and Kuldeep Yadav.

Australia: David Warner, Matt Renshaw, Usman Khawaja, Steven Smith(C), Peter Handscomb, Steve O'Keefe, Josh Hazlewood, Nathan Lyon, Shaun Marsh, Jackson Bird, Glenn Maxwell, Mitchell Swepson, Ashton Agar, Marcus Stoinis, Matthew Wade and Pat Cummins.

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