Who will Mayank Agarwal’s opening partner be? Who will replace Virat Kohli in 4th place? Is there a case for Rishabh Pant? What about KL Rahul? Rarely has an Indian team looked so insecure before a crucial friendly like the one against Australia, which is due to begin in Melbourne on December 26th. Seeing their opponents insecure, dubious and moral is an opportunity the Australians rarely let go of, but this Australian side is slightly different. Instead of following the already battered Indian side with verbal warnings, they expect India to rise from the rubble – maybe the 2018-19 outcome has a lot to do with it.
India may still be scratching its head filling some big holes in its XI – the biggest one created by the departure of Virat Kohli, who was flown home for the birth of their first child – said Australian weirdo Nathan Lyon India has enough players to fill the “big hole” that the talisman skipper has left.
“… Ajinkya Rahane and (Cheteshwar) Pujara, to name a few. But there are still people like (KL) Rahul and (Mayank) Agarwal who were also exceptional. So there are enough people in this roster to fill Virat’s shoes, ”he said.
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However, Lyon’s kind words do not mean that they are not preparing for battle. He said the Australians plan to thwart the defense of Cheteshwar Pujara in Melbourne.
Ahead of the Boxing Day Test, Lyon announced that the hosts have done their homework to beat India’s number 3 as their wicket is challenging for them. Lyon said in the virtual press before the game that the Aussies were happy to have successfully implemented their idea against Pujara in the first test. However, you still have a few tricks to do.
“I can’t give any secrets to be honest. But of course Pujara is a world class batsman and he will be a big challenge for us for the rest of the series, ”Lyon said at a virtual press conference on Wednesday.
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“We talked about him (Pujara) at length before the series started. It was good to see some plans in Adelaide but we still have a few things,” he added.
Lyon went on to say that he loves to compete against some of the best in the business and Pujara is one of those players.
“So when he comes in we can hopefully try our best. It’s always fun to play against the best players in the world and Pujara is definitely one of those guys,” concluded Lyon.