If we look at the line-ups of the two teams, going by the cricket the 30 players in both squads have played
in the last 2 years, India seems to be comfortably the better side. India’s Team Impact is 1.79 as compared to Australia’s 1.65.
India has an edge both in the batting department (Team Batting IMPACT for top 7 batsmen is 1.75 to
Australia’s 1.59) as well as in bowling (Team Bowling IMPACT for top 4 bowlers is 1.90 compared to
Australia’s 1.81). This is the first time in three decades that an Indian team has been stronger on paper,
and that too, in both departments. Perhaps the first time since 1985 can an Indian team be considered
favourites in an Australian Test tour.
The two teams are facing-off with India as the superior side in recent times as well (a first, in Indian cricket
history). In the last two years, India have won 5 series, drawn 3 and lost 1. Australia have won 3, drawn 3
and lost 2.
This has to be India’s best chance of winning their first-ever Test series in Australia. However, as
mentioned above, Zaheer’s fitness remains the key to India’s edge in the series.
The above analysis is for the two teams if we take conditions out of it. To examine what impact Australian
conditions may have on proceedings, we go back by 3 series for both sides.