India v Australia
Sunday 24 September 09.00
TV: live on Sky Sports
India produced a strong performance in game two to take a 2-0 lead. On what was a tricky batting surface because of the Kolkata rains which had left the strip undercooked, they gritted their teeth to post 252.
And then they barely broke sweat in securing a 50-run win. Kedar Jadav's hat-trick appeared to be match-turning but India were on top at the time thanks to Bhuv Kumar's sensational swing bowling. They only had brief concerns when Steve Smith was going well.
Earlier Virat Kohli had produced a masterclass with 92 and, if there is a complaint, India perhaps should have posted more considering he was cruising when paired with Ajinkya Rahane, who notched a half-century.
Australia need to get Aaron Finch fit, and quickly. The opener has suffered with a calf problem in India and given that he was supposed to be close to making it for game one, it could be time to get him dosed up and out on the field.
The Aussies are in dire need of the balance he gives them. Opening with Hilton Cartwright has been a disaster while Mitchell Wade and Ashton Agar at Nos 7 and 8 respectively are both a spot too high.
If they feel they need to lengthen their batting they could pick James Faulkner instead of pacer Kane Richardson. Adam Zampa could also come back into contention if they think the Indore pitch will spin.
There have been only four ODI played at the Holkar Stadium in Indore. All, however, have been since 2006. England posted 288 in the first game, India made 292 against England two years later and five years ago the hosts amassed 418 for five against West Indies. Last time, in 2015, India could only manage 247 against South Africa but it was enough to get the game won.
Australia were doomed as soon as they lost the toss in Kolkata so we are not going to get too down about their chances in what is a must-win game.
There was a heavy toss bias favouring the side batting first and Australia had a terrible record on the road chasing 250 or more. It's now three wins from 17 since 2010.
It would appear that batting first in Indore is easier so Australia will be nervous about the flip. But if it goes their way then the 2.6613/8 could be considered value with Nathan Coulter-Nile and Pat Cummins in decent nick. Indeed, the Aussie bowling has not been too bad at all.
Top India runscorer
MS Dhoni top scored in that South Africa contest with an unbeaten 92. Rahane also notched a fifty. Dhoni gets a 9/1 quote from Sportsbook and Rahane 4/1. Kohli is 5/2. Rohit Sharma, the opener, has three failures out of three and looks no fun at 3/1.
Top Australia runscorer
We said that Warner and Smith had little to beat before the second match. Certainly the former looked like copping with his half-century. But few reckoned on Marcus Stoinis coming late to the party at Eden Gardens at big numbers. He is 17/2 for a repeat. With Kumar so dangerous up front, there could well be value in the middle- to lower-order. Glenn Maxwell is 13/2 and Faulkner is 14/1.
Australia if they bat first 2.68/5 (1pt)