The five-match T20 series between India and Australia is interestingly poised with the visitors coming back in the third match in Thiruvananthapuram with a 5-wicket win to stay alive. Team India's death bowling left too much to be desired as they leaked 43 runs in the last two overs, made worse by a couple of errors by the wicketkeeper. India had posted a mighty score of 222 runs on the board owing to Ruturaj Gaikwad's maiden T20I but were not able to defend it.
The Men in Blue will see a couple of changes in the playing XI with Shreyas Iyer and Mukesh Kumar returning to the side. More than two changes are likely given the form of a couple of players. India still have one game in hand but seeing how Australia responded in the last game, the Men in Blue would aim to seal the series on Friday in Raipur.
Shaheed Veer Narayan Singh International Stadium in Raipur Pitch Report
The series has been a run-fest so far with 400-plus runs in each of the three matches played. Thiruvananthapuram generally swings and seams for a bit, however, that was a belter as well and Australia chased down a huge total to stay alive in the series. However, things will be different when both teams arrive in Raipur for the venue's first-ever T20 international. The venue hosted its first ODI earlier this year between India and New Zealand and although a few IPL matches have been played here, international cricket is a different gravy altogether.
The surfaces at the Shaheed Veer Narayan Singh International Stadium have been usually slow. It can be deduced from the fact that the only ODI played here saw the team batting first get all-out for just 108. The highest score by the team batting first in six IPL matches was 164, which suggests that the surface aids the bowlers and both teams' bowlers will be relieved after the carnage in the first three games.
In six matches in the IPL, four were won by the teams chasing, which indicates that the bowlers get initial help and the wicket gets better as the game progresses and if the pitch is anything similar for the fourth T20I between India and Australia, the captain winning the toss will be aiming to bowl first with an aim to restrict the opponent to 150-160.