Australia's attempt to emulate their Ashes bowling formula from last summer, combined with question marks over a batting line-up shorn of Steven Smith and David Warner, has forced the omission of the vice-captain Mitchell Marsh from the team to face India in the first Test of the summer at a draining Adelaide Oval.
India have never won a Test series in Australia and their recent oversees record has also been poor with 1-2 loss to South Africa in February and 1-4 defeat to England in September. The Adelaide Oval hosted the first ever day-night Test match which was played between Australia and New Zealand in November 2015.
Marsh will be sent back to play for Western Australia in the Sheffield Shield but Paine made clear that he was likely to be required later in the series, with pitches in other cities unlikely to provide as much assistance to the bowlers. It's a great place to play cricket in general; the stadium has been redone, the pitch has always been good.
Captain Tim Paine confirmed that Handscomb would bat fifth in the order, with local favourite Travis Head at six.
"For the first time, they've got three or four seamers in their squad that can bowl 140 (kph)-plus and are very good bowlers", du Plessis told Australian reporters recently.
"Gaining the respect of our country and fans is as high priority as winning", said wicketkeeper Paine.
The odds are stacked in favour of the tourists - they top the Test rankings and boast the world's best batsman in Virat Kohli, plus a high-class pace bowling attack.
In the bowling department, India have opted for three specialist pacers Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah while Ravichandran Ashwin will be at the helm of the spin attack. "But I don't see anything radical happening because the skill-set is high and we necessarily wouldn't need to get into anything but at times when situations are hard you do find ways to upset the rhythm".
Which TV channels will broadcast Test series? Since they are playing at home, I foresee they will be a lot more closer, and they will be able to combine forces to really score.
"Where we were with Australian cricket at rock bottom eight months ago with what happened in South Africa, the word "elite". we have to raise the standard".
But India captain Virat Kohli said that Australia can still dominate at home and while he expects sledging to feature in the series, it will not go too far.
India's middle order also looks in good form with Cheteshwar Pujara, Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane and Hanuma Vihari all making half-centuries in the CA XI game.