NEW DELHI: Surya­kumar Yadav will captain India in their five-match T20 International series against Australia, leading a squad with just three members of the team that lost the World Cup final.

India went into Sunday’s World Cup final in front of nearly 100,000 fans in Ahmedabad undefeated in the lead-up games of the tournament and favourites to capture the one-day crown.

But Rohit Sharma’s team was outplayed by Pat Cummins’s Australia, suffering a six-wicket defeat and breaking the hearts of millions across the country.

Suryakumar, who was just one of three players from the ODI team to be selected for the T20 squad, will captain India for the first time.

India and Australia had also faced each other in a three-match series in September ahead of the World Cup, also in India, which the hosts won 2-1.

The T20 series opens on Thursday in Visakha­patnam in the southeastern state of Andhra Pradesh, followed by Thiruvan­anthapuram on Nov 26 and Guwahati on Nov 28.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) said that Shreyas Iyer will join the squad as vice-captain for the last two T20s, in Raipur on Dec 1 and in Bengaluru on Dec 5.

Warner Withdraws

Meanwhile, veteran opener David Warner withdrew from Australia’s squad for the T20 series in India.

The withdrawal of 37-year-old Warner means just seven of Australia’s World Cup-winning squad will remain in India for the series, among them Travis Head, Glenn Maxwell and Steve Smith.

All-rounder Aaron Hardie replaces Warner, who is gearing up to say farewell to Test cricket.

“Selectors decided Warner would return home on the back of a successful yet demanding World Cup campaign,” Cricket Australia said in a statement.

Warner was Australia’s leading scorer at the World Cup with 535 runs at 48.63.

Indian squad: Suryakumar Yadav (captain), Ruturaj Gaikwad (vice-captain), Ishan Kishan, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Tilak Varma, Rinku Singh, Jitesh Sharma (wk), Washington Sundar, Axar Patel, Shivam Dube, Ravi Bishnoi, Arshdeep Singh, Prasidh Krishna, Avesh Khan, Mukesh Kumar.

Australian squad: Matthew Wade (captain), Aaron Hardie, Jason Behrendorff, Sean Abbott, Tim David, Nathan Ellis, Travis Head, Josh Inglis, Glenn Maxwell, Tanveer Sangha, Matt Short, Steve Smith, Marcus Stoinis, Kane Richardson, Adam Zampa.

Published in Dawn, November 22th, 2023

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