India vs Australia 2nd semi-final | ICC Cricket World Cup 2015
Sydney: Defending champions India hopes that the law of averages does not catch up with them when they clash with Australia hosts in a much-anticipated semifinal World Cup in Sydney on Thursday.
India beat Australia only once in 35 years in a one-day international at the Sydney Cricket Ground when Sachin Tendulkar century helped to win the first of three matches last tri-series in 2008.
But Mahendra Singh Dhoni`s men have surprised critics by the recovery of bilateral winless tour of Australia before the World Cup to sweep all came in the tournament.
Starting with two wins against Pakistan and South Africa, India won all six group matches of Group B page then shot fiery Bangladesh by 109 runs in the quarterfinals.
Surprisingly, India piled scores over 300 every time they hit the first and rejected the opposition in seven games so far.
India now face a team that has won seven of their 10 games of the World Cup against them, although Dhoni`s men secured a five-wicket victory in the quarter-final at home in Ahmedabad four years ago.
Four-time champions Australia won six semi-finals, they have appeared in since the inaugural event in 1975, but India will consider BTC as the best place to stop the recording.
Groundsman Tom Parker kept the two teams guess the nature of the ground, he will unveil for the semifinal, but the wear at the end of a long season indicates spin-friendly conditions.
Spinners South Africa Imran Tahir and JP Duminy shared seven wickets to bowl out Sri Lanka for 133 in the quarter-final at the SCG last week, setting up a nine-wicket victory for the Proteas.
But the bat has dominated the ball in the previous games in the World Cup venue, with Australia accumulate 376 for nine against Sri Lanka and South Africa breaking 408 for five attack West Indies
Australian coach Darren Lehmann should stop shop similar to that obtained his team for the match against Sri Lanka and predicted a high-scoring encounter.
“I think the field will be very similar to the one we used in the game against Sri Lanka, where nearly 700 runs were scored, so I think it will be another high scoring affair,” Lehmann wrote about the Cricket Australia official website www. cricket.com.au.
“Final but seem to have a way of working differently sometimes. So even if the field is a belter, you have to do the basics well enough to earn a high score. And then bowl well enough to defend it.”
Lehmann estimated that the constant meetings with India in the summer would “add an extra element to what is already looming an exciting contest.”
“India is really starting to gain confidence on the back of some good performances since the start of the tournament, but we know them inside out – just as they do us.
“Everyone in Australia is fortunate that nous` team have reached the final week of the World Cup and are now within striking distance of a target we have set more than a year ago.”
With organizers estimating that 70 percent of the tickets were picked up by Indian fans, Australia feel as if they were playing an away game on their own soil.
India will again rely on a starting Shikhar Dhawan’s openers, who 367 points tournament with two centuries and Rohit Sharma, who hit 137 against Bangladesh.
But it will Virat Kohli Australians will be wary after the stylish right-hander hit four centuries in the previous four-test series, including 147 and 46 to the SCG.
Kohli`s form dipped after a match winning century against Pakistan but Dhoni was confident his star batsman coming good when it mattered.
“A lot is just around the corner because the big players still mark in big games,” said Dhoni Kohli.