Virat Kohli vs Steve Smith soon: Will sparks fly again?

Virat Kohli vs Steve Smith soon: Will sparks fly again?

Asked whether Virat Kohli is a better batsman than contemporary Steve Smith, former Australia captain Michael Clarke proffered a split decision in debating both players' qualities ahead of their upcoming ODI series.

Kohli became the fastest batsman in the history of the game to reach 30 ODI centuries, after only 194 matches, with the India skipper averaging more than 55 runs per innings. "Kohli leads by example and is the better skipper than Smith at the moment", he said.

Once known for lethargic and unimpressive approach on the field, the Indian cricket team has come a long way in terms of setting the fielding standards in world cricket.

"They will certainly miss (Mitchell) Starc and (Josh) Hazlewood but in general there are a lot of good players and with a lot of experience of playing IPL cricket here in India".

Virat Kohli has always shared a volatile relationship with Australians.

Clarke added that MS Dhoni, Anil Kumble had their own ways of handling the team while Virat Kohli had a different style.

India take on Australia in the second One-Day International (ODI) at Eden Gardens, in Kolkata. In his last seven ODIs, the Punjab cricketer has managed to score just 162 runs.

India and Australia will play five ODIs in all and three Twenty20 matches during the tour lasting almost a month. They are in a very good nick at the moment.

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Believing it to be a massive series for Steve Smith and company, the 36-year-old said they will aim to regain the top spot by scoring a 4-1 win against India in the ODIs. The reason for Yuvraj's axing from the Sri Lanka limited-overs series was directly associated with his failure to clear the endurance test.

"The team's performance during the Sri Lanka tour was outstanding", the chief selector pointed out.

I reckon the top three of both teams.

Australia, on the other hand, suffered an embarrassing defeat to Bangladesh, several rungs below them in the ICC Test rankings before pulling one back to redeem some pride.

Faulkner's double-blow in April was a stunning reversal for the all-rounder who was feted as man-of-the-match in the 2015 World Cup final when the hosts crushed New Zealand in front of a joyous crowd of 100,000 at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

An India-Australia series played without fireworks on the field, without the sledging and banter is a rarity. I've been battling, to be honest, probably the last 18 months.

Australian journalist tried to make the most of the situations as Pakistan take on World XI without any Indian player.

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