Australia's plans in the build-up to the four-match Test series against India have hit a speed bump. David Warner has been ruled out of the opening Test after suffering a groin injury in the one-day series while Mitchell Starc has been given compassionate leave due to a family illness. Josh Hazlewood was left out of the final two T20Is with back soreness.

With Joe Burns struggling for form and Will Pucovski suffering concussion in the first tour match against the Indians, there is still uncertainty over who Australia's opening pair will be during the day-night Test in Adelaide.

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Earlier this year, speaking to Sportstar in the lead up to India's tour of Australia, Starc shared his views on the imminent four-match Border Gavaskar Trophy, while emphasising on the host's batting and bowling departments.

Starc said that the return of Steve Smith and Warner for the India Tests - the two were not part of the 2018-19 series as they served their bans for the Newlands ball-tampering scandal - will be a big boost for the team.

"Our top order has been exceptional in the past 18 months. Having two of the best batsmen [Warner and Smith] in the world is going to make a difference in any side," he said. "When you add Joe (Burns), Marnus (Labuschagne), Travis (Head), and (Matthew) Wadey, who can all make big runs on their day, it’s a great top six in anyone’s book."

Bowling Variety

The Australian support bowlers including Michael Neser, Mark Steketee, James Pattinson and Sean Abbott gave a good account of themselves during the first three-day tour game at Drummoyne Oval, and Starc praised the variety in Australia's bowling arsenal.

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"It’s always good to have variety in an attack whether it be left-arm, seam or swing and spin," he said. "We are very fortunate to have a great combination going right now with Pat (Cummins), Josh, Nathan (Lyon), Patto (James Pattinson) and all of our bowlers. Everybody brings something different to the table."

Starc said that the key to handling the pressure of dealing with a strong Indian batting headlined by Virat Kohli is to bowl well as a unit. “By sticking to the basics, bowling in partnerships, backing our plans and building pressure. India has one of the strongest batting line-ups in the world but we back ourselves,” he said.