Australia vs India: Fourth Test Preview

Cricket ball sits on pitch

India stormed back into the series with a fantastic response to their defeat in Perth - and outperformed Australia in almost every area of the game.

The focus for Australia continues to be their lack of top-order runs, which has been continually put down to the absence of David Warner and Steve Smith.

Australia vs India | 3 January - 7 January | Sydney Cricket Ground, Sydney 

To Win Match
Australia 14/10
Draw 9/2
India 11/10

Australia were embarrassed in the traditional Boxing Day Test, as they were left to pray that rain would keep them in with a chance of regaining the Border-Gavaskar trophy.

Marcus Harris and Aaron Finch have yet to really fire as an opening pair, having made a promising start - and there is already talk of Cameron Bancroft being rushed back into the XI after his ban expired earlier in December.

The lower-order's contributions with the bat have been one of the few positives in this series for Australia - and Pat Cummins' half-ton in Melbourne showed that the Baggy Green have some backbone but they really need their batsmen to come to the party.

The SCG traditionally takes some turn, but the curator may be doing his utmost to prevent giving the tourists any sort of edge, with Australia needing a win to tie the series and avoid a first-ever series defeat at home to India.

The forecast in Sydney looks positive, but there could be rain on day five.

India endured a 2018 of near misses, after failing to come away from series in South Africa and England with what would have been historic wins.

Virat Kohli's team stand on the brink of achieving a first for their nation and breaking the psychological shackles imposed by their long-barren run in Australia.

Cheteshwar Pujara has been the bedrock of India's improved performance in Australia. He has outperformed all others when it comes to occupying the crease and gutsing it out in seam-friendly conditions.

India will need to find a replacement for Rohit Sharma, who has been withdrawn injured. Hanuma Vihari is likely to come into the XI.

Jasprit Bumrah underlined his place as India's premier quick bowler with a fantastic display in Melbourne - and could be critical to the team's hopes of a series win.

Verdict: India 11/10
India have been refocused by the Perth defeat - and seem fated to triumph on current form.

Written by Jonhenry Wilson for Hollywoodbets

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