Dettol T20I Series v India
Swepson shock as Aussies bowl first in opening T20I
Mitch Swepson whisked into T20 team to replace injured Ashton Agar while Matthew Wade again gets gloves instead of Alex Carey
Sam Ferris at Manuka Oval, Canberra
4 December 2020, 06:42 PM AEST
Queensland leg-spinner Mitch Swepson will make a shock return in Australian colours after he was parachuted in for tonight's first Dettol T20 International against India in Canberra.
Australia captain Aaron Finch won the toss and did not hesitate to bowl first at Manuka Oval.
Swepson comes in for injured left-arm spinner Ashton Agar after arriving in the nation's capital yesterday having been in the bio-secure bubble in Sydney with the Australia A squad.
Australia: Aaron Finch (c), D'Arcy Short, Matthew Wade (wk), Steve Smith, Glenn Maxwell, Moises Henriques, Sean Abbott, Mitch Starc, Mitch Swepson, Adam Zampa, Josh Hazlewood
India XI: Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Virat Kohli (c), Manish Pandey, Sanju Samson, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Washington Sundar, Deepak Chahar, Mohammed Shami, Thangarasu Natarajan
Agar suffered a calf strain on Wednesday night and has been ruled out of the T20 series.
The 27-year-old has played just one T20 for Australia – in 2018 against England at Edgbaston where he claimed 2-24 from four overs – and will partner fellow leggie Adam Zampa.
Express fast bowler Mitch Starc returns after missing the third Dettol ODI and will be joined by Josh Hazlewood and Sean Abbott in the pace attack.
Matthew Wade has retained his place in Australia's T20 side that last played against England in September and will open the batting and keep wickets, meaning Alex Carey remains on the sidelines despite a strong showing in the one-dayers.
Wade will bat at No.3 behind D'Arcy Short and Finch, followed by Steve Smith, Glenn Maxwell and Moises Henriques, who is playing his first T20I in three years.
India have moved KL Rahul up the order for the T20s to open the batting where he excelled in this season's IPL as the competition's leading run-scorer.
Youngster Thangarasu Natarajan will debut, while Jasprit Bumrah has been left out.
Manuka Oval had been a fortress for Australia's men's team, winning all six matches across three formats at the venue until India won the third ODI and ended the hosts' perfect run.
Australia will be wearing a special Indigenous shirt for the three-match series, which is a collaboration between manufacturer ASICS and two Indigenous women, Aunty Fiona Clarke and Courtney Hagen, who have been integral to the sport's recent efforts to better recognise and encourage the involvement of Indigenous Australians in cricket.
A win tonight will see Australia move back into first place on the ICC T20I men's team rankings after England's 3-0 win over South Africa moved them fractionally ahead of Finch's side.
Dettol T20 INTL Series v India 2020
Australia T20 squad: Aaron Finch (c), Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Alex Carey , Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Moises Henriques, Marnus Labuschagne, Glenn Maxwell, Daniel Sams, D'Arcy Short, Steven Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, Andrew Tye, Matthew Wade, Adam Zampa
India T20I squad: Virat Kohli (c), Shikhar Dhawan, Mayank Agarwal, KL Rahul (wicketkeeper), Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Sanju Samson (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Navdeep Saini, Deepak Chahar, T Natarajan
First T20: December 4, Manuka Oval, 7.10pm AEDT
Second T20: December 6, SCG, 7.10pm AEDT
Third T20: December 8, SCG, 7.10pm AEDT