Former Australia Head Coach, John Buchanan has opined that Australia is in the driver’s seat for the Test series as Indian captain, Virat Kohli will miss the last three of the four-Test match series.
Australia will host India for 6 limited-overs games and 4 Test matches. The 3-match ODI series commences on 27th November followed by 3 T20Is. The much-awaited Border-Gavaskar series will begin on 17th December with a pink-ball day-night Test in Adelaide followed by the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne, New Year’s Test in Sydney, and the last Test match in Australia’s fortress, Brisbane.
The BCCI has granted Virat Kohli paternity leave as the skipper and his wife, Anushka Sharma as expecting their first child in early January. Kohli will leave for home after the Adelaide Test match. On the previous tour, the right-hander scored 282 runs at an average of 40, including a ton in Perth.
India will miss Kohli’s presence on the field and in the dressing room: John Buchanan
John Buchanan has given Australia more chances to win the series than India after learning that Virat Kohli will not be part of the visitor’s eleven for three matches. Buchanan said that Kohli, along with Pujara, was one of the dominant players in their previous series which India won. He feels that Kohli is a motivator to his bowlers and fielders in the ground. The 67-year-old said that Kohli’s presence and leadership will be missed by the Indian team on the field and in the dressing room.
As quoted by Times of India, John Buchanan said, “It will definitely be an advantage for Australia because Kohli was one of the dominant players in the last Test series the two teams played. Of course, Cheteshwar Pujara was the star of the series, but Kohli’s presence in the middle was a huge factor in India winning that series. His presence on the field and in the dressing room will be missed by India.”
The former World Cup-winning coach observed that the current Australian batting line-up is much stronger than what the Indian bowlers faced a couple of years ago. With the return of David Warner and Steve Smith, the hosts have Marnus Labuschagne, who has been in tremendous form since Ashes last year, along with Matthew Wade, and Travis Head in the middle-order. He said that Warner and Smith have strengthened the Australian batting.
“When you look at the Australian batting line-up last time to what it will be now there is a big change. Warner and Smith bring in a lot of experience to this line-up. Marnus Labuschange has been in great nick, and so has the other batsmen, but Warner and Smith give the side a potent look,” Buchanan added.