Australia’s next World Twenty20 match is against India on Friday at Colombo. While the Aussies had to chase down 191 against the West Indies in a rain-affected match, India will be a much tougher task, given their squad depth.
India’s group matches have resulted in a 90 run thrashing of England, and a five wicket win over Afghanistan. Australia’s results have been similar: a seven wicket win over Ireland, and a 17 win over the West Indies under the Duckworth-Lewis method. Both teams will go into the knockout stage with a very even chance of winning.
Australia’s batting line-up has shown they won’t simply crumble at the gate. Shane Watson has scored more than 90 runs in the first two matches, and has been the lynchpin of the bowling attack. David Warner has scores of 26 and 28 to his name, and would be looking to settle in against the Indian bowlers.
Mike Hussey is another big one. With scores of 10 and 28 not out (albeit limited opportunities) the Aussies will look to him and George Bailey in the middle order if the batting collapses. And it could just, with the Indian bowling line-up sporting Irfan Pathan and veteran spinner Harbhajan Singh. The Indians pulverised England, with Gautam Gambhir, Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma all scoring 40 more, Sharma making 55. It looms as a test for Aussie bowlers Watson, Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc, who have proven themselves to be more than capable of bowling out a team. At just 19, Cummins is making rapid inroads into the longer forms of the game.
It will be a high scoring encounter-expect Sharma and Kohli to come out all guns blazing, regardless of whether India sets a target or chases. If the Aussies let them get away with untidy bowling, the possibility of a blowout is very much on the cards. If Warner and Watson come out first, they will need to not only score big, but score fast.
(image source: ICC)