Mumbai: Eyeing a maiden Test series win Down Under, the Indian cricket team left for Australia Friday for a gruelling tour, which will see them play four matches in whites, three ODIs and as many T20 Internationals.
India last toured Australia in 2015-16, having lost the five-match ODI series 1-4 and won the three-match T20I series 3-0. India’s celebrated clean sweep win against the Aussies had come under the captaincy of MS Dhoni. With no Dhoni in Team India this time, it will be interesting to see how Kohli manages the men-in-blue.
Various members of the team took to Tweeter to share their feelings ahead of their departure with chinaman Kuldeep Yadav terming it an “exciting challenge”.
“Exciting challenges ahead. Off to Australia with the boys #TeamIndia,” tweeted Kuldeep, who posted a picture with his teammates comprising young wicketkeeper and batsman Rishabh Pant, Rohit Sharma and others.
Pacer Jasprit Bumrah tweeted his picture and wrote, “Off we go! #Australia #Travelbound”.
“Taking off to head down under,” wrote Krunal Pandya on the micro-blogging site as he posted snaps with teammates.
At the pre-departure press conference on Thursday, Kohli emphasised on the need for the batsman to step up.
Head coach Ravi Shastri categorically said that there won’t be any chopping and changing in the ODI team from now with just 13 games remaining before the World Cup.
Experts and former players are seeing this tour as India’s best bet to defeat Australia in Tests as the hosts will be without their two key batsmen, Steve Smith and David Warner, who are facing a year-long ban for their involvement in ball tampering scandal in South Africa.