The team which draws the first blood is expected to dominate the India-Australia series

India's Ravichandran Ashwin during a practice session in Adelaide. (AFP)
India's Ravichandran Ashwin during a practice session in Adelaide. (AFP)

Dubai - Will the battle be between Virat Kohli and Steve Smith? Or will it be between Jasprit Bumrah and Mitchell Starc?



By Anis Sajan

Published: Thu 17 Dec 2020, 12:17 AM

With time, the frequency of India-Pakistan Test matches has reduced drastically, despite the fact that at one point in time the India–Pakistan cricket rivalry was considered as one of the most intense sports rivalries in the world.

Fifteen Test series have been played between the two sides, as well as a one off Test played in February 1999 as part of the Asian Test Championship. Each side has had four series wins, although Pakistan have won more Test matches than India in matches between the two nations.

The last Test series that took place between the two nations was in November 2007, which India won.

Now, the India-Australia series is equivalent or I can say bigger than India-Pakistan series, especially in terms of excitement for cricket fans as both the countries are regarded as the top two teams in the cricketing fraternity.

The Test match rivalry between the two nations started in 1947-48 and has only grown over the years, with both the teams proving their mark with their excellent performances.

Today, two of the best teams in international cricket, India and Australia will square off in the first ever pink ball day and night Test match between the two countries in the latter’s home ground.

This match will prove to be the litmus test for captain Virat Kohli and his boys who will be playing against the world's most successful team in day-night Tests with a 100 per cent record, winning all seven of the day-night Tests they have played so far and that too in their home ground.

India created history in Australia during their last visit in 2018, winning the first Test match and then the series Down Under for the first time ever, coincidently in Adelaide where they are going to play the first match of the current series.

We now need to see who will win the battle. Will the battle be between Virat Kohli and Steve Smith? Or will it be between Jasprit Bumrah and Mitchell Starc?

By announcing their playing XI for the historic first-ever pink-ball Test match against Australia, Team India has already sent out a positive message to the hosts that they are ready to take on the challenge Down Under.

While Prithvi Shaw and Mayank Agarwal will form the opening pair, the trio of Cheteshwar Pujara, skipper Kohli and vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane forms a rock-solid middle-order, with Hanuma Vihari grabbing the sixth position.

The bowling line-up features three pacers and a spinner — Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah and R Ashwin.

The team which draws the first blood is expected to dominate the series!


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