The Australian team have signaled their intent very early in the series and if the match against the Board President's XI is anything to go by, the Indian team can expect a tough fight over the next two weeks.
The visitors look driven after their Test win in Bangladesh and this reflected in the way they batted and bowled in the warm-up match. The performance of the unheralded players in the Australian line-up will give them a lot of hope.
Here in this article, we take a look at five player encounters which could define the course of the series.
#5 MS Dhoni vs Nathan Coulter-Nile
When MSK Prasad posed questions regarding the abilities of MS Dhoni before the Sri Lanka series, few eyebrows were furrowed, but then Dhoni decided to stand up. He scored runs for fun against Sri Lanka and saw chases through when the going could have become tricky for the Indian side.
However, Dhoni will now face much quicker bowlers and of late his problem has been against pace when the ball has been banged in short of a good length. This is where his battle with Nathan Coulter-Nile would be keenly observed. Coulter-Nile is a genuine pace prospect and on his day can rattle any opposition.
#4 Glenn Maxwell vs Yuzvendra Chahal
For all his exploits in the Indian Premier League, Glenn Maxwell has often stumbled against leg spin and hence the challenge posed by Yuzvendra Chahal could be an intriguing one.
Maxwell has improved his batting against spin as was evident by his maiden Test century in Ranchi earlier this year, but when he dons the coloured clothing, much will be expected of him.
Chahal, on the other hand, has come on leaps and bounds and if the selectors and the team management are to be believed, he has been identified as one for the future and thus this series assumes importance for him too.
#3 Steve Smith vs Jasprit Bumrah
The Australian captain averages 66.72 against India in seven innings and has over the past 15 months proven to be India's biggest nemesis across all the three formats.
This series promises to be no different but then he might have to deal with the threat of Jasprit Bumrah who has, in a very short period, shot up not only in the rankings but also in the reckoning.
He has, with his plethora of variations with both the new and old ball, become Kohli's go to bowler in ODI cricket and hence when Smith walks in to bat, Bumrah will, by all means, have the ball to hurl at him.
#2 Virat Kohli vs James Faulkner
There is no love lost between Kohli and Faulkner and both characters do not believe in hiding their emotions. They do not mind using colourful language at each other which makes their encounter one to watch out for.
"I've smashed you enough in my life ... just go and bowl" is what Kohli had hurled at Faulkner in Melbourne during the previous ODI series between the two sides.
Faulkner is motivated to resurrect his ODI career and is counting on his IPL experience to get the job done for his side this series.
#1 Rohit Sharma vs Pat Cummins
Perhaps the best opener going around against the white ball, Rohit Sharma's contributions at the top of the order will not only set a platform for the rest of the batting order but also go a long way in determining the outcome of the match.
However, he will be facing Pat Cummins, who will be the leader of the bowling attack, and ever since his comeback into the Australian scheme of things, he has looked a complete article and is, by all means, a match winner with the ball.
The encounter between Rohit and Cummins during the first powerplay promises to be a real humdinger!