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Australia vs India: Why India can’t take this depleted Australian side lightly

Australia vs India series is the talk of the town. Much has been said about the depleted Australian Test side that is getting ready to host India for a 4-Test series. Many are of the view that this is the weakest Australian side in a long time and Team India will have a golden opportunity to register their first ever series win in Australian soil.

But will it be a cakewalk for India?

Beware of Australia’s bowling unit

Yes, Australia are without two of their biggest players – Steve Smith and David Warner. However, history has shown that Australia is one of the strongest teams at home. Captain Tim Paine certainly has an inexperienced batting line up, but Australia’s bowling arsenal is top-class. In Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Patrick Cummins Australia have three seriously good fast bowlers who are in good form and will dish out the short-pitched stuff aggressively to the visiting Indian batsmen.

Then there is off-spinner Nathan Lyon who has captured 95 wickets in his last 18 Tests and is in terrific form. Given India’s recent troubles against off-spin bowling in Test cricket and how they have always struggled against good pace bowlers, Australia’s bowling line-up may well throttle India.

Also, India have shown a proclivity to implode on overseas tours in recent times. They have scored more than 350-plus only once in 8 overseas Tests this year, and if they continue to score in that category, Australia will have a real chance.

India’s recent overseas record has been poor

India have featured in two important overseas tours this year and have lost both. They lost 1-2 to South Africa and were vanquished 1-4 in England. While the team management may take heart from the fact that they competed, the point is that India have once again proven to be poor travelers and lost two back to back overseas Test series, despite both South Africa and England not being at their best.

India made their first tour of Australia in 1947/48 and in the 70 years since they have just won 5 Tests and never won a series here. Australia will be hopeful of choking India once again, especially as they are so overly reliant on their captain Virat Kohli and have had an underperforming middle-order along with a vulnerable opening combo, for a while now.

We certainly have a fascinating Test series lined up.

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