T20 World Cup: Starc replaces Agar as Australia elect to bowl first against unchanged India

Gros Islet (St Lucia), June 24 (IANS): Fast-bowling spearhead Mitchell Starc replaced left-arm spin all-rounder Ashton Agar as Australia won the toss and elected to bowl first against an unchanged India in a crucial Super Eight stage clash of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup at the Daren Sammy National Cricket Stadium on Monday.

The pitch for Monday’s game is the same strip used for the England vs South Africa game in which the Aiden Markram-led side successfully defended 163 to win by seven runs, with the cross breeze at high speed due to slight rain in the run-up to the match. India will progress to the semifinals of the tournament if they win, while Australia, who suffered a shock 21-run defeat to Afghanistan on Sunday, need a victory to keep their last four chances alive.

"It looks a belter. There's a breeze to contend with but the surface looks very good. We're looking forward to it, we are up for the challenge that we know India presents to us. We've found ourselves in this position a few times in World Cups before, and at this stage of the tournament every game is a must-win anyway."

"We understand that pressure comes with that but I've got full trust in my group. The mood is great, we've got a very experienced squad and staff and we've loved our time in the Caribbean," said Australia skipper Mitchell Marsh after winning the toss.

India captain Rohit Sharma said he would've wanted to field first too if the coin toss had fallen in his favour, as they fielded an unchanged eleven for the third straight time. “It looks a little sticky but we've batted first in games well this tournament. It looks a good surface and I hope it doesn't change too much as the match goes on.”

"The overhead conditions also matter in this part of the world. We've adapted well to the conditions so hopefully, it's another game where we can put on a show and adapt as quickly as possible. Every game matters and for us nothing changes."

Playing XIs:

India: Rohit Sharma (c), Virat Kohli, Rishabh Pant (wk), Suryakumar Yadav, Shivam Dube, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Arshdeep Singh and Jasprit Bumrah.

Australia: David Warner, Travis Head, Mitchell Marsh (c), Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Tim David, Matthew Wade (wk), Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Adam Zampa and Josh Hazlewood.



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Title: T20 World Cup: Starc replaces Agar as Australia elect to bowl first against unchanged India

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