India will find themselves in must win situation against Australia at Guwahati in sixth ODI of the series to stay alive in the seven match Hero Honda Cup. Few days back there was so much guess work going on with so many people expecting India to wrap up the series by 5-2 after Australia lost some of their key players due to injuries but now it was just matter of one bad game from India and Australians are firm favorite to clinch the series.
In last two games India have loss the game only because of their batting and that is the main worry of concern for the Indian think tank. However Indian Captain M.S.Dhoni has promised that India will put up a good show in the last two games to get over the lines which was missing in couple of games in the series.
Despite of two straight losses, India can still bounce back and win the series if they will put consistent performance in the last two games both with bat and ball. However, the task won't be a cake walk for Mahendra Singh Dhoni and his men as there will be immense pressure on them.
M.S.Dhoni has lots of worry factors like in bowling department Munaf Patel bring into the team in place of Ishant Sharma to stop the flow of runs but he failed to do the job and given away too many runs because of his lazy fielding effort. In batting department the form of Virendra Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir is raising another concern for the Indian captain. Both players got the start in almost each and every game but failed to score big runs.
In each of the five matches played on the tour, Virendra Sehwag has scored 13 runs of 11 balls, 40 runs of 31 balls, 11 runs of 25 balls, 30 runs of 19 balls and 38 runs of 30 balls.
However Dhoni knows Viru and Gauti are class player and to play a big innings is just matter of few games for them.
All in all it will be another interesting battle is expected at unpredictable Nehru Stadium Wicket.
Watch out for
Yuvraj Singh: A rather silent series for the man except one half-century in Delhi ODI. However man of his caliber is bound to bounce back sooner or later. If he gets going then it will be joy to watch out some of the shots which he uses to play with much ease.
Shane Watson: He is the man who played big helping hand for his team in winning the most of the close games by picking up the wickets at the right time, with a fine batting display in the last two games he has found his groove and looking really dangerous from Indian perspectives.
Pitch & Condition
The pitch at Nehru Stadium, Guwahati is expected to be another batting beauty. However there will be some help in the first half of the game for fast bowlers, later in a day there will be some turn for the spinners. So it makes an interesting call at toss. Most probably the team winning the toss would like to put plenty of runs on the board to put pressure on team batting second.
Both teams are likely to retain the same XI as player in the game at Hyderabad. Having said that by considering Munaf Patel performance in the last game Sudeep Tyagi may get a game in the do-or-die game.
Likely Playing XI for both Teams (Match is Schedule to begin at 08:30 AM India Time)
India Squad: V.Sehwag, S.Tendulkar, G.Gambhir, Yuvraj Singh, M.S.Dhoni (Captain & WK), S.Raina, H.Singh, R.Jadeja, P.Kumar, A.Nehra, M.Patel.
Australia Squad: Shane Watson, S.Marsh, Ricky Ponting (Captain), Michael Hussey, Cameron White, A.Voges, G.Manou (WK), D.Bollinger, Nathan Hauritz, B.Hilfenhaus, C.McKay.
Stats and Trivia
Shane Watson after getting lots of hammering in the first two games of the series now lead the highest wicket takers table with eight wickets in the bag at 24.12.
Sachin Tendulkar (265 runs at an average of 53.00) who made quite start in the series now sits just behind Michael Hussey (278 runs at an average of 92.66).
M.S.Dhoni needs 70 runs to achieve the 5000 runs in ODI.