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India vs Australia | Can Australia Improve their Sub-par T20I Record in Upcoming Series?

Nikhil Narain |Cricketnext | Updated: February 20, 2019, 10:20 AM IST
India vs Australia | Can Australia Improve their Sub-par T20I Record in Upcoming Series?

File image of Australian cricket team. (ICC Image)

Australia have their task cut out as they embark on a limited-overs tour to India which gets underway with the T20I series starting February 24.

India have the second-best win-loss ratio in T20I cricket having won 70 (lost 39) of the 113 matches they have played in the format. Australia are at number 4 with a win-loss ratio of 1.115 (played 114, won 58, lost 52).

India have a good record at home having won 21 of the 34 matches they have hosted. This is the second-best record for a team at home after Pakistan.

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Australia in India

Australia have played 8 matches in India and have won on only 3 occasions. They have lost 4 times to India (including the World T20 loss in Mohali) and once to New Zealand in Dharamsala (in the World T20).

Aaron Finch is the leading run-scorer for Australia in India. He has scored 197 runs in 5 innings at an average of 39.40 and strike rate of 140.71. He is followed by Glenn Maxwell (153 runs in 6 innings at 25.5 and strike rate of 135.39) and Usman Khawaja (143 runs in 4 innings at 35.75 at a rate of 137.50).

Interestingly, Steve Smith (83 runs in 4 innings) and David Warner (48 runs in 6 innings) have a poor record in India.

James Faulkner has picked 8 wickets in 5 innings in India while Zampa is the most successful spinner with 7 scalps in 6 innings. The leg-spinner is also their most restrictive bowler with an economy of 5.87 in India.

Australia do not have a great record overall in Asia either. They have won just 13 (and lost 17) of the 31 matches they have played in the sub-continent (including the UAE).

This is the worst record of all SENA (South Africa, England, New Zealand and Australia) countries in Asia – both in terms of the win-loss ratio and the winning percentage.

In terms of series played (not counting one-off matches), Australia, again has the joint-worst record (same win-loss series ratio as New Zealand) amongst SENA countries in Asia having won just 1 of the 8 series/tournaments they have played in Asia.

Australia have registered a score of 119 or less and lost the match on 7 occasions in Asia – the maximum amongst all visiting teams (SENA plus West Indies) in Asia.

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However, there have been some brilliant individual performances which stand out. Maxwell has an outstanding record in Asia. He is the highest scorer for Australia in these conditions and has a stunning strike rate of 163.61. In fact, this is the highest strike rate by any batsman in Asia (min. 300 runs). His unbeaten 145 in just 65 deliveries against Sri Lanka in Kandy is the only hundred by an Australian in Asia in T20I cricket. Australia created a world record in this match by registering the highest-ever team score in T20I cricket (263 for 3) – a record that is still intact. It is only the second instance of Australia crossing 200 in an innings in Asia – the other being when they registered 201 for 7 against India in Rajkot in 2013.

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Mitchell Starc has been the highest wicket-taker for Australia in the sub-continent with 24 wickets in 15 innings.

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Australia's Middling Record Since WT20 2016

Australia have a win-loss ratio of just 1.272 post the 2016 World Cup (from 4th April, 2016). They have won 14 of the 26 matches played in this period (and lost 11).

Australia have played 7 series/tournaments in this time-period and have just two.

Maxwell and Finch have been in scintillating form, though, in this period. While Maxwell has scored 734 runs in just 21 innings at an average of 45.87 and strike rate of 158.87, including two hundreds, Finch has aggregated 689 runs in 22 innings at 38.27 at a strike rate of 166.02.

In fact, Maxwell’s average-strike rate product is the highest in the world amongst the 33 batsmen who have scored a minimum of 400 runs during this time-frame.

The other Australian batsmen who have performed well in this period include D’Arcy Short (515 runs at a strike rate of 121.17), Travis Head (291 runs at a strike rate of 131.67) and Chris Lynn (226 runs at a strike rate of 130.63).

Andrew Tye is Australia’s leading wicket-taker in T20I cricket since WT20, 2016. He has picked 35 wickets in just 22 innings at an average of 19.88 and strike rate of 13.8.

He is followed by Billy Stanlake who has accounted for 25 wickets at 20.08 apiece. Zampa has not only been amongst the wickets (17 wickets in 13 innings) but also restricted the opposition batsmen with an excellent economy rate of 5.91.

India, on the other hand, have won 26 of the 40 matches played (and lost just 12) since WT20, 2016. In particular, they have an enviable record at home in this period having won 11 and lost just 3 of the 14 matches they have played. This includes an unbeaten run in 5 successive series at home – they beat Sri Lanka, West Indies, England and New Zealand and drew against Australia.

History and current form make India the firm favourites. But will Australia be able to cause an upset?
First Published: February 20, 2019, 10:06 AM IST

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