Australia vs India 2018-19: 5 players who could have a great Test series
India's tour of Australia began with the three-match T20I series which ended 1-1, after the visitors registered an emphatic six-wicket victory at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) in the third and final game of the series.
Hosts Australia led by Aaron Finch won the first game at Gabba, Brisbane by four runs (thanks to the DLS method). The second game played at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) was eventually called off due to incessant rain. India held the upper hand in that game having restricted the Aussies to 132-7 in 19 overs before rain curtailed the proceedings.
Needing a victory to level the series, Virat's men bounced back with a brilliant display of bowling to restrict the hosts to 164/6 in 20 overs and not allowing them to score a single maximum throughout their innings.
In reply, on the back of good innings by Shikhar Dhawan, skipper Virat Kohli and Dinesh Karthik, India chased down the target losing just four wickets in 19.4 overs thereby levelling the three-match T20I series 1-1.
Now, the caravan moves to the Adelaide Oval for the ultimate format of the game- gruelling four-match Test series that gets underway on November 6.
Following the Adelaide Test, Perth, Melbourne (Boxing day Test) and Sydney (New Year Test) will be hosting the second, third and fourth Test matches respectively. While the BCCI has announced the Indian squad for all the four games, Cricket Australia has announced the squad for the first two Test matches.
With plenty of quality players in both the sides, let us look at five players who could have a great time in the much-anticipated four-match Test series.
Shami is currently the highest wicket-taker for India in Tests this year with 33 scalps in nine matches, with his best figures being 5/28. The Bengal pacer was the chief tormentor with the cherry for Kohli's men during South Africa tour finishing with 15 wickets in three matches.
He continued his good run with another brilliant bowling display against the English in their own backyard, picking up 16 wickets in five matches.
Though India could not get their desired results, Shami's exploits with the ball were the major takeaways from those tours.
Though other pacers have been equally good this year, Shami's performance when India last toured Australia was exceptional with 15 wickets in three matches. He followed it up with 17 wickets in seven matches at the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup, where India lost in the semi-finals against the Aussies.
Acquaintance with the conditions, form and experience make Shami the one to watch out for in the Test series.