India vs Australia 1st ODI: Australia wins toss, opts to bat first against India at Sydney
Photo Credit: BCCI

Australia captain Aaron Finch on Friday won the toss and elected to bat against India in the first ODI of the three-match series at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG).

Mayank Agarwal will open for India alongside Shikhar Dhawan in Rohit Sharma's absence. Steve Smith replaced injured Mitchell Marsh in Australia's eleven that last played in England.

The much-anticipated India's tour of Australia will get underway as both sides lock horns in the first of the three-match ODI series. India begin their ICC Cricket World Cup Super League campaign as the men in Blue resume international cricket. The first two games of the ODI series will be played in Sydney with the action shifting to Canberra for the final game.

Going into the series, no team has been touted as favourites as both are equally strong on paper. However, India last played an ODI match in February during the New Zealand tour while Australia played their last ODI as recently as in September. Hence, India playing an ODI after a long hiatus might give Australia a slight edge apart from their home advantage.

The big positive for the Indian team is the form of the players. The whole squad was part of the recently-concluded Indian Premier League (IPL) where they showed an impressive display.

The vice-captain of the team, KL Rahul, was the highest run-getter in the tournament, amassing 670 runs. He was followed by fellow Indian, Shikhar Dhawan, who had created history by becoming the first player to register consecutive centuries in the IPL. Apart from Rahul and Dhawan, the squad has skipper Virat Kohli, youngster Shubman Gill, Hardik Pandya, Shreyas Iyer, and Mayank Agarwal to give the Indian side all the necessary strength to tackle the Aussie bowlers' ferocious attack.

Despite having a solid squad, India's challenge in the series will not be easy against Australia. Australia's Steve Smith witnessed a disappointing IPL season but the player had issued a warning to the visitors ahead of the series saying he has "found my hands the last few days".

The Aaron Finch-led side also has David Warner, Marnus Labuschagne and Glenn Maxwell to further strengthen their batting line-up. Hence, the forthcoming series between both sides will be an exciting watch for all cricket fans.

Squads:

India (Playing XI): Virat Kohli (C), Shikhar Dhawan, Mayank Agarwal, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah and Navdeep Saini.

Australia (Playing XI): Aaron Finch (C), David Warner, Steven Smith, Marcus Stoinis, Marnus Labuschagne, Glenn Maxwell, Alex Carey, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Adam Zampa and Josh Hazlewood.

(Inputs from Agencies)

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