Fri, 08 Dec 2023

New Delhi [India], February 7 (ANI): India are all set to take on the mighty Aussies in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy starting Thursday at Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium in Nagpur. All eyes will be on star Indian batter Virat Kohli who loves playing against them having seven Test tons to his name. In the last series played on home soil Virat could only feature in three out of four and failed to score a ton. His last Test century too came in November 2019 when he scored a ton against Bangladesh.

"Virat is one of the best ever. The age he is at and the stage he is in his career, he will want to use this series as his platform. The best players always choose the best series. We have seen in the T-20 world cup how good he was. It is an indication how hungry he is. He is certainly one who can push us back and we will have to get the better of him to be able to win this series. And I can tell you that we will be ready for him," said Marcus Stoinis on Backstage with Boria show.

Australians are placed right on top of the ICC World Test Championship table 2021-23 with a percentage of 75.56 and they are eyeing this series as an opportunity with the absence of pacer Jasprit Bumrah and wicket-keeper batter Rishabh Pant.

"Look injuries are never good. You always want to play against the best players even if they are in the opposition. That's what makes our sport what it is. Having said that we know what impact Rishabh and Jasprit can have and India will certainly miss them. Rishabh Pant had a huge impact in the last series in Australia and is a game-changer. So is Jasprit. Any team will miss players of their quality. For us, we will miss the reverse swing of someone like Starc in Nagpur. Having said that we have options. Young Lance Morris for example. What a dream debut it will be for him if he gets an opportunity, " said Marcus Stoinis.

Over the years there have been some great contests in the Border-Gavaskar series and off late one of the most exciting ones has been between Ravichandran Ashwin and Steve Smith.

"Steve plays spin very well and if you see his recent record he is in red hot form. He had a fantastic Test series at home and then got a couple of hundreds in the BBL as well. He will be the best prepared for Ashwin who is one of the best ever. I have to say this will be an enthralling contest," said Marcus Stoinis.

India are eyeing a 4-0 clean sweep or a thumping 3-1 win in order to qualify for the ICC World Test Championship 2021-23 final happening this year. (ANI)

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