It’s a bit impolite to talk about India’s tour of Australia right now. A three-match ODI series between the two sides stares us in the face before a whole year has to go by for the first of the four Tests to even feel real, but such has been the build-up to that Australian summer of 2020 that Australia captain, Tim Paine, already called it “mouth-watering”.It’s not going to be a “revenge” series for them,Paine has said in the backdrop of a 2-1 series loss in 2018-19.
It’s Virat Kohli’s turn to look forward now. The Indian captain has gone one step ahead of Paine and argued that the Test series could be the “best series we’ve seen in the past five-six years”, partly because they expect the hosts to mount a tougher challenge in terms of batting.
“Having won last year, that gives us a lot more confidence going back,” Kohli said in Mumbai on Monday (January 13). “This time around the series is going to be different, in terms of their batting challenging our bowlers. To be fair, last time around, the players were not that experienced. If you take out David (Warner) and Steve (Smith)… Marnus (Labuschagne) came in but he played only one game. The way he’s shaped up in the last summer, it’s amazing – so much consistency it always good to watch at the international level – and the hunger and passion, you can see in his game.
“It’ll be a challenge for us to break through that batting order but it’s a challenge we should look forward to. We should not look forward to easy games and going to Australia, you should not expect anything easy. We want to keep challenging ourselves as a team and we’re the top two sides in the table as well, in the world championship. I’m sure it’s going to be amazing for people to watch because the series will be right up there with any of the best series we’ve seen in the past five-six years. We’re pretty excited for it.”