Published: Wed, December 05, 2018
Sports | By Johanna Francis

Australia vs India, 1st Test - India Predicted XI

Australia vs India, 1st Test - India Predicted XI

Indian skipper Virat Kohli has already made it clear he wants Test cricket to survive, and his attacking, results-based captaincy - regardless of the surface offered - is geared towards ensuring interest remains in the traditional format.

Besides the question of India's bowling against Australia's depleted batting, it is this contest that could decide the series.

More specifically, hundreds are what Langer is interested in. Or will the host nation play nice? But with Justin Langer and the seamers going big-data in terms of analysing the chinks in Kohli's armour, it could only be a matter of time before they expose the minor ones here or there, and target them.

The numbers were a little bit off - Langer had accidentally doubled-counted global centuries - but the message was clear: centuries matter.

The team management's decision for a rest day comes after India played a four-day warm up game against Cricket Australia XI in Sydney last week.

And he's not been picked.

No visiting batsman has scored more Test centuries at Adelaide Oval than Kohli's three - including his maiden Test ton in 2012. I think the key in Australia is to keep bowling in the right areas for longer periods of time. "They know how the wicket behaves and it is all about intent as batsmen".

Shaun Marsh was THIS close to notching three figures against India in 2014.

Shaun came closest - and as close as you can come.

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The problems begin at the top, however, where one-day specialist Aaron Finch will line up for just his third test after debuting in the 1-0 series defeat to Pakistan in October.

While he struggled in the subcontinent, Warner averages 49.50 against India at home with four centuries in eight matches.

The 14-man squad announced two weeks ago was dismissed by local media as the worst collection of Australian batsmen in history.

Both Steve Smith and David Warner have plundered big scores against India. The tall, young and lanky bowler made Ponting jump around in a hostile spell, before overpowering then Australian captain into submission.

Unlike the SG or Dukes balls they usually wreak havoc with, the old Kookaburra in Australia does not really swing or seam, which could substantially defang the Indian quicks, especially Kumar, who is unlikely to be fielded for the series opener in Adelaide from Thursday.

Australia's batting line-up misses prominent names such as Smith and Warner, both of which are now serving a one-year bans for their involvement in the infamous ball-tampering scandal in March 2018.

"We need them (the banned trio)", Warne said in October. "I think we'll obviously have a chat about him before the game starts".

"I have a lot of confidence", Hazlewood said.

Little can be done in the short term, however, and former captain Smith and his vice captain Warner's absence will be felt keenly around the country's stadiums throughout the summer. "I don't think it's going to play a massive part in this game". "I've got tremendous faith in the top order".

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