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World Cup 2023: Spin-heavy India hold an edge over Australia in Chennai

Cricket World Cup 2023, India vs Australia: It will be India’s spinners versus Australia at Chepauk.

CWC 2023, IND vs AUS: Spinners to play a key role in India vs Australia match _ Walking Wicket (Photo_ ©BCCI_Twitter)
Jadeja, Ashwin to play a key role in IND vs AUS clash (Photo: ©BCCI/Twitter)

Host India are going to begin their ICC Men’s ODI World Cup 2023 campaign with a clash against five-time title holder Australia.


The match is going to be played on October 8 at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai.

Looking at the traditional surface of the ground, one could easily expect spin to be a huge weapon for both the sides - as the ball will turn, drift and pose all sorts of questions to the batters.


However, there is a contrasting picture in the selected squads of both the teams. India have gone ahead with three spin options, namely Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav and, the experienced Ravichandran Ashwin- who recently made his ODI comeback after six years. On the flip side, Australia have one lone spinner- Adam Zampa in the squad, alongside Glenn Maxwell who can bowl a few overs of spin.



India slightly ahead of Australia with variable spin options

It was quite a surprising decision from Australia to include only one main spinner in their set-up, even after knowing that the slow Indian tracks will be really helpful for the seasoned spinners.


Zampa has 142 ODI wickets in 85 games at an average of 29.1 and strike rate of 31.5 in total. He has been in terrific form in the last 18 months.


Since 2022, Zampa is the third-highest wicket-taker among those whose teams are participating in World Cup 2023. In this period, Zampa has captured 45 ODI wickets in 21 innings at an average of 22.46 and strike rate of 24.3 with the best figure of 5/35.


Even in the ongoing year, Zampa has managed to pick 15 wickets in nine ODI innings at an average of 32.4.


The leg spinner has a terrific record while playing in India, having taken 27 ODI wickets in 16 innings at an average of 30.8.


In his two ODI games at the Chepauk stadium, Zampa has picked up five wickets in two innings at an average of 22.2 and strike rate of 24.


Glenn Maxwell will help him with a few overs of off-spin. Even though he isn’t a regular spinner, Maxwell has 64 ODI wickets at an average of 47.7, out of which six wickets at an average of 57.8 have come in India.


On the other hand, India can have variations in their spin bowling combination. Jadeja’s left arm spin and chinaman Kuldeep Yadav’s lethal deliveries will be as valuable as the off-spin of Ashwin, who came into the tournament as the last-minute replacement for Axar Patel.


Kuldeep has been in excellent touch, he is the second-highest wicket-taker in 2023 with 33 ODI wickets in 17 innings - at an average of 16.03 and strike rate of 20.36, at an economy of just 4.72 with two four-wicket and one five-wicket haul.


Jadeja too has been in decent touch with 15 ODI scalps in 12 innings at an average of 31.7 and economy of 4.94 in the ongoing year.


Ashwin too had picked up four wickets in two games in the recent ODI series against Australia. Also, the Chepauk stadium favors the spinners, and Ashwin, who has grown up in Chennai, knows the conditions better than anyone else.


ODI Wickets in India

Name

Inns

Wkts

Avg

Eco

SR

BBI

Kuldeep

36

61

29.80

5.86

30.5

4/18

Jadeja

66

95

31.50

4.92

38.4

4/32

Ashwin

44

69

30.4

5.08

35.9

3/24

ODI Wickets in MA Chidambaram Stadium

Name

Inns

Wkts

Avg

Eco

SR

BBI

Ashwin

03

05

19.8

3.54

33.6

58.9

Jadeja

03

03

51.3

5.13

60.0

55.6

Kuldeep

03

05

26.8

5.58

28.8

53.5

Shubman Gill interviewed Ishan Kishan when he smashed double ton in ODIs against Bangladesh _ Walking Wicket (Source_ ©BCCI_Twitter)
Ishan Kishan might replace Gill in Australia clash. (Source: ©BCCI/Twitter)
Shubman Gill’s absence could hurt India’s prospects

India opener Shubman Gill has contracted dengue and it looks like he wouldn’t be available for the team’s opening World Cup clash against Australia.


This is a big blow for India, as Gill has been in top form in 2023. He is the current highest ODI run scorer with 1230 runs in 20 innings at an average of 72.35 and strike rate of 105.30 with five fifties and five centuries - with his best of 208 – in this year.


In the recent ODI series against Australia, Gill managed 178 runs in two innings at an average of 89, at a strike rate of 111.25.


He is undergoing treatment, but it definitely takes time to recover and this means that Gill could possibly miss the first two to three World Cup games - including the one against Pakistan fixture on October 14.


In his absence, India will have to make do with Ishan Kishan at the opening spot. Kishan has scored 448 runs in seven innings as an opener at an average of 74.66 and strike rate of 125.13, with three fifties and one century to his name.



Australia getting back into rhythm

Australia looked a little out of shape against the first couple of games against India in the recently concluded ODI series. However, the two warm-up games against Netherlands and Pakistan have helped the players get back into the rhythm.


Mitchell Starc bowled with express pace and swing. The batters adapted to the requirement of the situations. On the other side, India’s both warm-up games were spoiled due to rain and this 10-day break could break their focus and momentum.


Nonetheless, both teams will give each other a tough fight with the aim to start their respective campaign on a winning note.


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