So the series decider now moves to the most beautiful stadium in the country in Dharamshala. Both the teams would want to give their more than 100% and regain the Border-Gavaskar trophy. Especially India would want to win the match and the series to end their season on a high. Even if Australia manages to pull out a draw it would be a big achievement for them and also if the test match ends in a draw the trophy would be retained by Australia because they are the current holders of the trophy.
Many cricket pundits have believed that Australia would have an upper hand in the final match but I would consider it as a 50–50 affair. Both the teams are under pressure. It is true that the pitch would be favoring Australian style of playing cricket but we have seen in the recent past that India also have a good pool of fast bowlers and Australia would not want to consider India bowlers any less.
According to the pitch curator, he has left some grass in the middle of the pitch which indirectly states that it would be helping the fast bowlers more.But he also said that the pitch would break up on 4th and 5th day and once again the toss is going to play an important role in the result of the match.
Regarding Team selection, Australia would mostly go with the same 11 which they brought on the field in Ranchi and no major changes can be seen in their squad. On the other hand, India may change their squad a bit.Shami was seen practicing with the team in Dharamshala and he has also proved his match fitness.He may be a part of the team on Saturday. Also, India may rope in B.Kumar in place of Ishant Sharma because of his ability to swing the bowl and the fact that the pitch may support his style of bowling. But the thing which would be bothering team India is the fitness of Virat Kohli.He had suffered an injury on the field in Ranch on his shoulder.He came out to bat and also came to the field in the 2nd innings of Australia in Ranchi but India team wants their captain to be fit for the long run and would not want to risk his fitness. India misses their captain more on the field than in the batting department because the energy he puts into the team when they are on the field is remarkable. In the 1st innings in Ranchi when Rahane was captaining in place of Virat their was a lack of intent which Team India has never shown in the complete home season. Virat did not come out to practise in today’s net session in Dharamshala as well and the decision on his participation would be taken on saturday morning before the match itself. If he is does not participates in the match then most probably shreyas iyer is going to get his maiden test cap.
So the test series is evenly poised and I believe both the teams will come out with a clear strategy in their mind. I think the team winning the toss would love to bat first on the Dharamshala track, see off the new ball and then put sufficient amount of runs on the board.
Let’s see how India ends their beautiful home run at an even more beautiful Dharamshala Stadium.