India’s young pace attack, battered and bruised in the last game, will fancy their chances when they take the field for the fourth T20I against Australia in Raipur on Friday. That there will be no Glenn Maxwell in the opposition line-up should inject some confidence in them.
After the shock in Guwahati, where a Maxwell-powered Australia chased down a 223-run target, India would once again look to get their series-sealing victory. The hosts are 2-1 up and would not want to wait till the fifth and final T20I to clinch the series.
But Maxwell — and Marcus Stoinis and Josh Inglis as well — having returned home, Australia look a weakened side, at least on paper. And that should help India.
The Indian pace battery will hopefully be recharged with the return of Mukesh Kumar, who missed the last because of his wedding. While Prasidh Krishna has looked terribly out of rhythm, Mukesh has impressed with his control, especially at the death. The Bengal pacer has been called “Junior Shami” by Ravichandran Ashwin and that should further boost his confidence and performance.
India’s spinners though have done quite well. The Aussie batters haven’t really dominated Ravi Bishnoi and Axar Patel barring odd phases. India captain Suryakumar Yadav will once again bank on Bishnoi to give him breakthroughs.
There’s not much to worry about for India’s batters. They have looked confident, dominant and have mostly called the shots. Young openers Yashasvi Jaiswal and Ruturaj Gaikwad have shown their calibre, Surya has enjoyed batting in his favourite format. Special mention should also be made of Rinku Singh, who has been smart batting in the lower middle-order.