June 21, 2024

ODIAustralia vs. India, January 23, from 2.20pm, Sydney Cricket Ground, Sydney – watch on Nine Network

IT was a familiar story in the fourth One Day International between Australia and India in Canberra with the Aussies carving out a victory when it looked like the visitors had the game within their reach.

The Indians were cruising towards the huge 349 target at Manuka Oval, with 277 runs and only one wicket down but a batting collapse saw them spectacularly lost nine wickets for just 46 runs.

Indian captain MS Dhoni said his team’s younger players will learn from the experience of such a crushing loss after electing to use rash shots rather than knuckle down and fight to protect their wicket.

“There was a bit of pressure on the youngsters. International cricket is all about pressure, you think about the right shot. You realise you have to take a bit more time and take the game slightly to the end.” Dhoni said.

“Rohit batted very well with Shikhar. And Dhawan and Kohli batted majestically.

“In the last five years, we have not had a fixed bowling line up other than the spinners. That pushes us to the extreme to get some extra runs.”

The win was Australia’s 18th win in a row at home in the One Day International arena, a run that extends back to their match with South Africa at the WACA in 2014.

After clashing in the nation’s capital, the focus shifts to the Sydney Cricket ground where the Australians hoping to finish off the series in style and complete the whitewash of the visitors.

A loss in the match at the SCG would see the Indians drop from second to third in the ODI rankings.

Let’s take a look at who will be making an impact at the SCG.

Top run scorer markets

After both teams surpassed 300 runs at Manuka Oval in the nation’s capital, the action is set to slow down on the Sydney Cricket Ground wicket.

Canberra has always been described as a batsman’s paradise, but the SCG should provide a lot more help for the spinners, who were torn apart on the flat Manuka deck.

Given the way the international game is played in this day and age big totals are still expected and the action should again go down to the wire.

Australia top run scorer

Australian captain Steve Smith is the selection for top run scorer in the Australian innings.

The Aussie captain Steve Smith has had an incredibly consistent tournament to date, top scoring in the first One Day International at the WACA and managing to score at least 41 runs in all four matches.

On a slower SCG pitch that will offer plenty to the spinners Smith’s ability to excel against the slower bowlers will put him a level above his teammates who sometimes struggle with spin.

Sportsbet has Steve Smith at $4.50 to be Australia’s top run scorer

India top run scorer

Indian batsmen Virat Kohli is the selection for top run scorer for the visitors.

Kohli dominated the Aussies in Canberra with a dynamic 100 which looked like it would guide his team to victory, only to have his lower order teammates let him down.

He amongst the top ranked players in the world across all three formats and the slower conditions of the SCG pitch should suit his style of play down to the ground.

Sportsbet has Rohit Sharma at $3.20 to be India’s top run scorer

Top wicket taker markets

After playing on a flat Canberra deck where wickets were hard to come by, the bowlers should be back in vogue on the SCG pitch.

The SCG is perennially known as a ‘spin-friendly’ environment, with both teams expected to take in at least one spinner each.

For that reason, two slower bowlers are the selections for most wickets in Sydney.

Australian top wicket taker

South Australian Nathan Lyon is the player selected to take the most wickets for Australia.

Lyon has long been regarded as one of the best spin bowlers in the world at test level, but the man they call the ‘Goat’ has struggled in the shorter form of the game at international level.

In Canberra he only managed to take one wicket whilst conceding a huge amount of runs.

Expect Lyon to bounce back in Sydney and lead Australia’s charge towards a 5-0 whitewash.

Sportsbet has Nathan Lyon at $5.50 to take the most wickets for the Australians

Indian top wicket taker

Indian spin bowler Ravi Ashwin is the selection for most wickets in the Indian innings.

The number two ranked test spinner in the world failed to make an impact at Canberra in the wicket column, but he was not alone with only three of his teammates ending the innings with scalps to their names.

Ashwin is a world-class bowler and will relish what the Sydney pitch has to offer and should lead the Indian attack with a significant contribution.

Sportsbet has Ravi Ashwin at $4.00 to take the most wickets for the Indians

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