India, who outplayed Australia in the first T20, have a chance to clinch the three-match series if they defeat the Aussies in the second T20 at Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) on Friday. On the other hand, Australia, who are not acquainted to losing at home, are expected to come out all guns blazing in the second T20, which promises to be full of action.
After a below-par performance from India in the ODI series, they played an all-round game to clinch the first T20, which saw bowlers such as Jasprit Bumrah also come to the party, taking three crucial wickets. The first T20 win also marks their back-to-back victories against Australia in the tour as MS Dhoni's men had won the fifth ODI in Sydney as well.
Can they win their third match on a trot? India, who have been in an amazing form with the bat, can surely lift the series at the MCG via another all round performance like their victory in Adelaide.
On the batting front, opener Rohit Sharma, who has been in top form in Australia, provided a flying start to India and Virat Kohli played a huge innings to put up a massive total in Adelaide. Both batsmen will be expected to deliver in the second T20 as well, like the way they have been doing after they set their feet Down Under earlier in the year.
India have welcomed Yuvraj Singh into the T20 team. He may not have played a major role in the first T20, but will still have an important role to play with the bat and the ball in the second T20. The left-hander, despite being out of the team for a long time, can still play some useful knocks when required. If the in-from India batsmen such as Rohit and Kohli lose their wicket early, India will bank on Yuvraj's experience along with Dhoni in the middle order.
India are not expected to make any changes in the team as the management will not be be keen to break a winning combination.
Meanwhile, Australia are going to be weakened as they are set to miss their star players David Warner and Steve Smith, who are the pillars of their team. The duo has been rested ahead of their crucial New Zealand tour. But, the Aussies are going to be pleased with the return of their prolific batsman Glenn Maxwell, who is coming back after missing the first T20 match.
Experienced campaigner Shane Watson believes Maxwell provides a huge X-factor to Australia.
"Glenn Maxwell can just come in and take the game away from the opposition incredibly quickly. He's got all the shots. He hits the ball wherever he wants. You can't really captain against him, because wherever you set the field he's going to hit it where the fielders aren't. He's incredibly talented, and the X-factor he provides in any team, is very special to be able to do that," PTI quoted Watson as saying.
Despite some stars missing in their team, expect the Aussie players to be determined for a win and take the series to a decider. Their bowlers, such as Shaun Tait and Kane Richardson, might have had an off day in Adelaide, but are surely going to test the India batsmen and make early inroads for Australia to emerge triumphant in the second T20.
The first T20 match was played on a good batting wicket, and one can expect a similar 22-yard strip on the second T20 match, which will be full of runs. With quality batsmen in both teams, a run feast is on the cards.
Australia: Aaron Finch (c), David Warner, Steve Smith, Glenn Maxwell, Shaun Marsh, Chris Lynn, James Faulkner, Matthew Wade, Nathan Lyon, Cameron Boyce, Travis Head, John Hastings, Scott Boland, Kane Richardson, Andrew Tye, Shaun Tait, Shane Watson.
India: MS Dhoni (c), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, Suresh Raina, Hardik Pandya, Gurkeerat Mann, Rishi Dhawan, Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin, Harbhajan Singh, Jasprit Bumrah, Ashish Nehra, Umesh Yadav, Ajinkya Rahane.
Where to watch live
India vs Australia 2nd T20 is scheduled for a 7:10 pm local time (2:10 pm IST, 8:40 am GMT, 3:40 am ET) start. Star Sports 1, Star Sports HD 1, Star Sports 3, Star Sports HD3 will broadcast the India vs Australia 2nd T20 live on TV in India with live streaming on Starsports.com and Hotstar.
Australia viewers can watch India vs Australia 2nd T20 live on Channel 9, while the online live stream option is on Cricket Australia Live.
Sky Sports 1 is the channel to watch the second T20 in the UK, while the live streaming option is on Watch Sky Sports and Sky Go. Willow TV will broadcast the match live in the US, while all the action can be live streamed on Willow TV Online.
Viewers in the Middle East can watch India vs Australia 2nd T20 live on OSN Cricket, with the live stream option on OSN Play. Audience in South Africa and Sub Saharan Africa can watch the India vs Australia 2nd T20 on SuperSport, with the live streaming online option on SuperSport Live.