The daily tournament preview charges down the wicket with Cricket World Cup tips for a blockbuster between Australia and India.
19:30 (AEST), Sun 9th Jun @ The Oval, London
History: Played 136: Austraila 77 V India 49 (10 No Results)
Last meeting: March 13, 2019: Australia d India by 35 runs at Feroz Shah Kotla
Final Thoughts: Two of the Cricket World Cup’s genuine big guns square off, with Australia taking on India at The Oval in a potential final preview.
Both heavyweights remain unbeaten. Australia kicked off with a comfortable seven-wicket win over minnows Afghanistan. David Warner (89* off 114) and Aaron Finch (66 off 49) led the batting charge after Pat Cummins and Adam Zampa did the damage with the ball, taking three wickets apiece.
But they only scraped past West Indies by 15 runs on Thursday. Steve Smith (73 off 103) held Australia’s innings together after they sunk to 4/38. Alex Carey (45 off 55) chipped in nicely, before Nathan Coulter-Nile’s stunning 92 off 60 lifted the Aussies to 288 all out.
The Windies looked to have the chase in hand but Mitchell Starc (5/46) reprised his 2015 Cricket World Cup form to help secure an important win.
India were the last team to start their campaign. They kicked off with a solid six-wicket victory over embattled South Africa on Wednesday.
Yuzvendra Chahal (4/51), Jasprit Bumrah (2/35) and Bhuvneshwar Kumar (2/44) all starred to restrict the Proteas to 9/277. Rohit Sharma’s 122 not out steered India to the win with 16 balls to spare.
India have won nine of the last 14 ODI clashes between the nations, including a 2-1 series win Down Under in January.
But Australia recovered from a 2-0 deficit to beat India 3-2 in India in March. Usman Khawaja spectacularly found form with 383 runs at 76.60, including two centuries and two fifties.
Australia will be looking for their top order to perform in unison after their early collapse on Thursday. India, meanwhile, need Virat Kohli to fire.
But their positive recent results in this rivalry and momentum from playing considerably more cricket of late bodes well for Australia.