In the lead-up to the upcoming three-match ODI series between India and Australia, the Aussie captain Pat Cummins provided updates on the fitness of key players. While the news was mixed for the Australian squad, the return of Steve Smith was undoubtedly a highlight.

Addressing the media during a pre-match press conference, Cummins confirmed that both Mitchell Starc and Glenn Maxwell would be unavailable for the first ODI match against India. Starc has been sidelined due to soreness in his groin and shoulder, while Maxwell continued to recover from an ankle injury aggravated during training before the T20I series against South Africa. Cummins expressed hope that both Starc and Maxwell would return to the playing XI later in the series.

The skipper also shared positive news about Smith, who had been nursing a wrist injury and was ruled out of the recent limited-overs series against South Africa.

Cummins, who is himself is returning to while-ball cricket after a long gap of 11 months due to injury, has assured fans that his wrist has fully healed, and he is ready to make a comeback with the series against India.

“I am feeling pretty good, my wrist is all healed now. I am hoping to play all three games. Starc won’t be playing tomorrow, hope he will be well bowled later in the series, same with Maxwell,” Cummins was quoted as saying to PTI.

Cummins also explained the team’s strategy for the series, emphasizing the importance of giving match time to everyone in the squad ahead of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023. He noted that the team management is aiming for a balance between player rotation and ensuring key bowlers get valuable overs to deliver.

Also READ: IND vs AUS 2023: India’s best playing XI for the first 2 ODIs against Australia

“We are trying to have a balance between getting a match time to everyone in the middle as we are going to the World Cup in a couple of weeks,” added Cummins.

Australia set to pick four frontline bowlers in their playing XI

Regarding the bowling lineup, the right-arm pacer mentioned that Australia would include four frontline bowlers who would be prepared to bowl throughout the various phases of the game. Additionally, he highlighted the effectiveness of spinner Adam Zampa in containing the run rate and taking crucial wickets in the death overs.

“We have picked four frontline bowlers who should be ready to bowl in all phases. Especially, Zampa is effective in not only keeping the run rate down but also picking and taking a couple of wickets in the death which is really important as well. It would not be surprising if we keep 3-4 overs of him,” Cummins added further.

As cricket fans eagerly await the series opener between India and Australia, all eyes will be on Smith’s return and how the Australian team performs in the absence of Starc and Maxwell. The upcoming series promises exciting cricket action and serves as valuable preparation for the impending ICC World Cup.

Also READ: India vs Australia 2023, ODI series: Date, Match Time, Venues, Squads, Broadcast & Live Streaming details

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