With Anil Kumble opting out, Mahendra Singh Dhoni will lead India against the Australian Capital Territory XI in a warm-up match starting
at the Manuka Oval on Thursday.
Apart from Kumble, veterans Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly are also set to skip the match to pave way for the likes of Virender Sehwag.
After all the controversies and the bad blood in the wake of the tumultuous Sydney Test, Kumble said his team was now eager to get a taste of the real action.
"It's important we get the best out of this game," he said. Their focus back on cricket again, the visitors sweated for about a couple of hours in the nets on the eve of the three-day game.
Apart from Sehwag, Dinesh Kaarthick, Irfan Pathan, Pankaj Singh and VRV Singh would get a chance to impress the think-tank in the match to bolster their case for a berth in Perth, venue of the third Test.
Kumble gave enough hints that he was taking the game seriously, for he wanted to get a measure of the bench strength. "We have been in Australia for the last three weeks and some guys haven't still had a hit in the middle," he said. Two other players who are least likely to take the game casually are Yuvraj Singh and Wasim Jaffer.