The five-time champions, Australia are gearing up their preparations for the upcoming ODI World Cup 2023, in India. The Aussies will be eyeing winning the World Cup title since they won it last time in the ODI World Cup 2015. They will start their run in the tournament with their campaign opener against the hosts, India.
Both teams will play their campaign opener at the MA Chidambaram Stadium on Sunday, October 8. Prior to that, both teams are in action against each other in the ongoing three-match ODI series against each other. Meanwhile, there are a couple of concerns and conundrums around the Australian team considering their issues ahead of the start of the marquee international tournament.
With said that, here we’ll have a look at three basic things that Australia need to rectify before the ODI World Cup 2023 begins with their first match against India.
Availability of pace bowlers
At the moment, the Aussie management is enduring the unavailability of the star pacers from the playing XI. It includes the likes of skipper Pat Cummins, alongside the veteran pacer Mitchell Starc. Both the players are not available for selection in the playing XI in the ODI series against India.
In the absence of senior pacer and skipper, Pat Cummins, Steve Smith led the Australian side in the second ODI of the series against India. Apart from that, it was Spencer Johnson who replaced Mitchell Starc in the playing XI of Australia for the second ODI. It is probably one of the major issues that Australia need to address before the commencement of the tournament.
Middle Order batting
Australia faced a big blow in the recently concluded five-match ODI series against South Africa when their star opening batter Travis Head got injured and ruled out of the series against India. As a replacement for Head, star all-rounder Mitchell Marsh had to take charge as an opener for Australia.
This shuffle has also increased a struggle for the Aussies in their middle order as the batting depth is not visible after Marnus Labuschagne; so, the middle-order batting is one of the major issues for the ODI World Cup 2015 champions before their campaign in the start in the upcoming edition of the ODI World Cup.
Managing Players amidst injuries
Australia faced a number of injury hits in the five-match ODI series against South Africa. They had to play without their five key players in the series. Skipper Pat Cummins with his fractured wrist, alongside Mitchell Starc’s groin soreness, was ruled out of the series; as a result, all-rounder Mitchell Marsh was appointed as the skipper against South Africa.
Apart from Cummins and Starc, Glenn Maxwell is also out of the team due to ankle soreness. Former skipper Steve Smith also made his comeback in the India series after enduring an injury and being out of action from the series against South Africa.
The injury scare is the concern that might hamper Australia’s expectations in the quest for their sixth ODI World Cup title. With said that, the Aussie management needs to address and rectify this concern as soon as possible before the start of the main round of the tournament.