After brushing aside Afghanistan in their World Cup opener, Australia’s first real challenge came through the rejuvenated Windies who failed to take advantage of a good start. However, in their third game, the Aussies failed to chase down a massive score against a talented Indian bowling attack.
David Warner: He has just continued his IPL run into the World Cup with two fifties to his name. If there was ever a doubt about his place in the team, Warner has proved all doubters wrong in the first three games. His fifty against India, though, was too slow paced and the eventual loss could be attributed to the same.
Aaron Finch: After a torrid time over the last year or so, Finch seems to have recovered his lost confidence and with Warner standing across the 22 yards, he looks like the Finch we know. He actually played well, and scored quickly, against India before answering a disastrous run call from Warner.
Steven Smith: No cricket for a year, no problem. In fact, the suspension seems to have helped him. Smith is averaging almost 11 runs higher than his career numbers. Had a Bhuvneshwar Kumar ball not stayed low, even India’s firepower laden bowling was struggling to get the better of him.
Usman Khawaja: When you have been touted as the No. 3 for a good couple of years and after just two games you have been dropped to No. 4, you need to have a little chat with yourself. While the 42 against India might offer him a reprieve, Shaun Marsh, who averages a cool 48+ at No. 4, will fancy his chances of making the field by the time the group stage is done.
Glenn Maxwell: We haven’t seen the best of Maxwell so far in this World Cup but he is one of those players who can turn on the style on any given day. Also with Stoinis out, there is hardly anyone who can compete with him for the No. 5 spot.
Alex Carey: His gritty 45 against West Indies was only bettered by his performance against India - an innings where the top order just left too much for him to do. One thing that has become certain though is that Australia might just have found a good keeper who can last them a while.
Nathan Coulter-Nile: Any RCB fan who saw Coulter-Nile smash the West Indies bowlers with utter disdain would be well within their rights to be furious. If I was a betting man, I would have put in a lot of money behind NCN getting injured in the group stages. But for Australia’s sake, hopefully, that doesn’t happen because they just can’t afford it anymore.
Pat Cummins: It is easy to perform when you are just another player on the team, but when the bright lights come on that is when you can be a Superstar. Everyone who has watched Cummins bowl will tell you what a talent he is. But now it is time to take that next step for the Aussie pacer.
Mitchell Starc: While all the talk before the World Cup was about Cummins, Starc has come out to prove a point. His fifer against Windies was a joy to behold and against India, he looked good as well. If he can build on these performances, there is no reason Australia can’t win the Cup yet again.
Jason Behrendorff: There is no way Australia will walk in against Pakistan with two spinners which meant that it was either Kane Richardson or Jason Behrendorff who would get a chance on the biggest stage of the sport. Behrendorff gets the nod from us purely for the experience he brings to the table.
Adam Zampa: The only reason he has been picked over Nathan Lyon, in my opinion, is the fact that leg spinners are the fashionable option these days. But if he puts in a performance as he did against India, the veteran might just get the nod over him.
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