Narendra Modi and Anthony Albanese Sing National Anthem with Rohit Sharma and Steve Smith, Watch

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese greeted the players and sang the national anthems with the cricket teams ahead of the opening day of the final Test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in Ahmedabad on Thursday.

Before the toss, the two captains Rohit Sharma and Steve Smith received the Test cap from their respective prime ministers, Narendra Modi and Anthony Albanese.

IND v AUS, 4th Test – LIVE

BCCI president Roger Binny felicitated Australia’s Prime minister Albanese, while the secretary Jay Shah felicitated PM Modi.

Modi and Albanese also did a lap of honour across the ground to mark the occasion of 75 years of friendship between India and Australia.

On Wednesday, Albanese paid tributes to Mohandas Gandhi, India’s independence leader, during a visit to the Sabarmati Ashram, which was one of Gandhi’s abodes in India. Albanese later attended a cultural event related to the Hindu Holi festival at the state governor’s residence.

Albanese, on Thursday, will later leave for Mumbai, where he will visit India’s homemade aircraft carrier INS Vikrant, which was commissioned into the Indian navy in September. The two leaders will hold official talks in New Delhi on Friday.

ALSO READ | PM Modi, AUS PM Anthony Albanese Celebrate India & Australia’s 75 Years of Cricketing Diplomacy

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, right, and his Australian counterpart Anthony Albanese greets their respective counties cricket team captains Rohit Sharma and Steven Smith at the start of the fourth cricket test match between India and Australia in Ahmedabad (AP)

Australian captain Steve Smith won the toss and opted to bat.

Having won the third match at Indore, Australia need to win this Test to level the series 2-2.

They decided to go into this Test with an unchanged squad.

“We are going to have a bat, playing with the same team. Looks like a nice surface, does look like a good wicket. The guys performed well last week,” Smith said at the toss.

India skipper Rohit Sharma said he would have also batted first.

“We would have batted first. We know what needs to be done. We need to regroup as a team, you can reflect on so many things. Not the surface what we saw in the first three Tests, looks like a good pitch, I hope it stays the same for all five days,” said Rohit Sharma.

India made one change, bringing in Mohammad Shami in place of a rested Mohammed Siraj.

ALSO READ | Steve Smith Wins Toss, Australia to Bat First; Shami Replaces Siraj

Playing XIs:

India – Rohit Sharma(c), Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Srikar Bharat(w), Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Ravichandran Ashwin, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav

Australia – Travis Head, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Steven Smith(c), Peter Handscomb, Cameron Green, Alex Carey(w), Mitchell Starc, Todd Murphy, Matthew Kuhnemann, Nathan Lyon

(With inputs from Agencies)

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