Cheteshwar Pujara and Steve Smith
India batsman Cheteshwar Pujara found himself captaining fellow No. 3 Steve Smith during the Australia star's brief stint with Sussex. Pujara, 35, enjoyed a purple patch for Sussex that included three hundreds in six innings in April and May, while the highest score Smith could manage was 89. Smith, however, has a superb Test record at The Oval, averaging nearly 98, with two hundreds in three matches.
Pat Cummins and rival India paceman Mohammed Shami will both have extra responsibility in the absence of injured quicks Josh Hazlewood and Jasprit Bumrah. During the drawn 2019 Ashes series in England the now 30-year-old Cummins led Australia's attack with 29 wickets in five matches at a miserly average of 19.62. Shami may not be able to boast similar figures, but at his best the experienced seamer gives India captain Rohit Sharma great control in the field.
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Australia off-spinner Nathan Lyon has been his country's leading specialist slow bowler for more than a decade, with 482 Test wickets at an average of just over 31 apiece. India counterpart Ravichandran Ashwin is also closing in on 500 Test wickets, with 474 at 23.93. India have sometimes been reluctant to play Ashwin in English conditions. But a dry pitch expected to turn could mean Ashwin gets a spot.
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