Australia confirm two changes for third ODI against India, with Behrendorff and Lyon out
Zampa, Stanlake in for series decider
Australia have made two changes to their XI for the series-deciding Gillette ODI against India on Friday, with Adam Zampa and Billy Stanlake coming into the side.
Stanlake replaces paceman Jason Behrendorff, who has been ruled out with back soreness, while Nathan Lyon has been dropped to make way for Zampa.
Melbourne Renegades paceman Kane Richardson has also been called into the squad as cover.
Australia XI: Aaron Finch, Alex Carey, Usman Khawaja, Shaun Marsh, Peter Handscomb, Marcus Stoinis, Glenn Maxwell, Jhye Richardson, Peter Siddle, Adam Zampa, Billy Stanlake
Behrendorff, who has a long history of back problems, has not been released back to his KFC BBL side Perth Scorchers along.
Nor has allrounder Mitchell Marsh, who will stay with the ODI squad in Melbourne and will also miss the Scorchers’ clash with Hobart in Perth on Friday night.
The axing of Lyon comes just two matches after he’d replaced Zampa in the side for the series opener in Sydney.
The pair are jockeying to be Australia’s frontline spinner at this year’s World Cup and despite going wicketless in the opening two games, Lyon had earned praise from skipper Aaron Finch.
“I think he’s been really impressive,” Finch said this afternoon, before the off-spinner’s axing was announced.
“Obviously not getting a wicket, he’d have liked a bit more return for that.
“When he keeps bowling that well, he will get rewarded eventually.”
Behrendorff put his first-class career on hold this summer and eased back to top-level cricket via the limited-overs formats after another crippling back injury.
While he still harbours ambitions to play Test cricket one day, the left-armer says his white-ball only approach this season has been vindicated by his inclusions in both Australia’s ODI and T20 sides.
"It's something we spoke about at length at the end of last season in particular, because I've had recurrent (injuries), the same ones over the last couple of years," Behrendorff said in November.
"It's a decision we didn't make lightly but something we thought, for the longevity of my career, to give me a bit more time now (to recover) has been really good."
Victory for the Australians on Friday would hand them their first series win in almost two years having won just four of their past 23 one-day internationals.
Having re-jigged their batting line-up in the series around recalls for Usman Khawaja and Peter Handscomb, Finch said the improvement in his side’s batting has been the major positive of the series so far.
But the skipper added securing the trophy on Friday night, after losing campaigns against England (twice), India, South Africa, New Zealand and at the Champions Trophy, was his side’s major focus.
“It’s been a while since we’ve won a series,” Finch said.
“There’s been a lot of improvement and a lot to be proud of so far.
“But winning the series is the focus.”
Gillette ODI Series v India
Australia ODI squad: Aaron Finch (c), Jason Behrendorff, Alex Carey (wk), Peter Handscomb, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Mitch Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson, Peter Siddle, Billy Stanlake, Marcus Stoinis, Adam Zampa.
India ODI squad: Virat Kohli (c), Rohit Sharma (vc), Shikhar Dhawan, Ambati Rayudu, Dinesh Karthik, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni (wk), Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Khaleel Ahmed, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj, Vijay Shankar, Shubman Gill
First ODI: Australia won by 34 runs
Second ODI: India win by six wickets
Third ODI: January 18, MCG (D/N)