After their preparation for the India Test series in “sub-continent like conditions” in UAE, the Australian team arrived in Mumbai on Tuesday. Steve Smith addressed the media a day after after landing. Australia play four Test matches with the first beginning in Pune from February 23.
Before the first Test, Australia play four-day warm-up game against India ‘A’. This will be ideal Test of their preparations. The visitors were in UAE where they had a training camp. They even played a intra-squad match to give a competitive feeling before the big series.
The last time Australia came to India, they lost a four-match Test series 4-0. But captain Steve Smith is looking to change the result this time. “It’s a great challenge to play here in India. We know if we can pull something off and win a series here, we can look back at it in 10-20 years as some of the best times in our life. It’s a great occasion to play here in India,” Smith said.
Australia’s main threat will be to deal with Virat Kohli’s batting and R Ashwin’s bowling. While Smith does say they have a gameplan for them, he did not wish to reveal it.
Both countries share a big rivalry and the series is always hotly contested. And this is the find of series that can see a lot of sledging. Both teams have in past maintained that they are up for it.
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As far as bowlers are concerned, Australia will be hoping that Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood give them a great start as do not have a great spin department. Only Nathan Lyon is the experienced spinner for them.
Australia will also look to halt the winning streak of India. The hosts are on a 19-match unbeaten steak since 2015. Kohli is unbeaten in Tests at home. India have not lost a Test at home since 2013!
Smith and his team know this and they will like to be the team that ends it now. Last time Australia won a Test in India was back in 2004-05. They also won that series.