The T20I series is all level, which in many ways is an apt reflection of both the sides. Both India and Australia were flawed and had moments of brilliance. They also need a lot of things to work out.
As the tour heads towards the all-important Test series, all eyes will be on the Indian batting order, more so with the Australian bowling attack looking sharp and in good nick.
As such, the importance of the Indian openers becomes paramount as the new ball will be Australia's best bet to get amongst the Indian order. Former Indian captain Sunil Gavaskar believes the visitors should go with Prithvi Shaw and Murali Vijay as the two openers in the first Test match.
'Rahul is not in good form'
"He (Shaw) is got to play the first Test. He has had his form not just in New Zealand, but also in the two Test matches that he played in home. Rahul's form has not been well. If Rahul had been scoring runs in Australia, even in the T20s if he would have scored at least 30s or 40s, we could have said yes," Gavaskar said on air during the third T20I in Sydney.
Echoing the sentiments of Robin Uthappa, who is also an expert for the ongoing series, the legendary batsman said that the team management should look at Vijay since he has been a great batsman for India in overseas conditions for a long time.
"Vijay has been doing well overseas for a long time. It had been a pretty ordinary series in England, and that can happen to anybody. But he is a good player and I would like to see him open. He and Shaw will make just the right combination. For Shaw is attacking, like (Virender) Sehwag, he likes to get to the ball. Murali, on the other hand, will play the role of an anchor," Gavaskar added.
Murali Vijay was dropped after he failed in the first two Test matches in England, but then went across to Essex and scored runs which forced the selectors to include him in the squad for Australia. However, it remains to be seen if he walks out to face the new ball, since KL Rahul and Prithvi Shaw were the preferred openers for India in the home series against the West Indies.