Sydney: Australia opener Aaron Finch expects India will be formidable rivals in Thursday's World Cup semi-final in Sydney despite being well-beaten by the hosts ahead of the tournament.
Aaron Finch. Pic/AFP
India lost the four-Test series 2-0 and failed to make the final of the tri-series that also featured England, but Mahendra Singh Dhoni's men have since made a remarkable comeback with seven straight World Cup wins.
Finch said Australia were unlikely to have a psychological edge at the Sydney Cricket ground due to their recent results against India. "I don't think so, guys move on pretty quick from that kind of stuff," Finch said on Tuesday. "We played some really good cricket against India earlier in the summer. Now they have played beautifully throughout this World Cup. Undefeated so far, the team has grown in confidence.
"But when you look down our team, we match up quite well." Finch, who is struggling for runs despite scoring a century in the first match against England, said the semi-final will be the "biggest game" he will have played in.
"It's going to be huge. It's obviously going to be my biggest game. I can't put it any other way," the 28-year-old Victorian said. "It's a huge opportunity to be able to show off our skills as a team. I think we've played some great cricket over the last two years. "There's no reason why we are not going to go into this game confident. I think we've got every right to be."
Finch was unsure if the SCG wicket will be as spin-friendly as expected and give India the early advantage. "I have not had too much of a look at it," he said. "The last time we played here it looked like the wicket would spin quite a bit but it did not. It played really true. "It's hard to tell since there are still two days out from the game. The wicket can change quite a bit over here in two days."
The hard-hitting opening batsman is likely to retain his place in the side despite a lean trot since making 135 against England. In Australia's subsequent World Cup fixtures, Finch scored 14, 4, 24, 20 and 2 after the match against Bangladesh was washed out without a ball being bowled in Brisbane. Finch said he had a net session with close friend and former Victoria team-mate Andrew McDonald and spoken to Australian batting coach Michael Di Venuto in a bid to get back to his best form.
"I'm feeling good and hitting the ball nicely, that's all I can ask," he said. "But I am not someone who over-analyses it a hell of a lot. "I really trust McDonald he's one of my best mates. To touch base with him was something I really needed. "I've spoken to 'Diva' (Di Venuto) quite a lot and 'Boof' (Australia coach Darren Lehmann). There is nothing that I'm concerned about."