Syndey Cricket Ground is all set to host the new year's Test from Wednesday, January 3, as Australia lock horns against South Africa in the final game of the three-match series.
The hosts are 2-0 up and will be aiming to complete a series whitewash against the Proteas and take a step forward in securing their place in the finals of the World Test Championship.
The conditions at the SCG is known to be spin-friendly, and Australia would hope this game provides them with an ideal opportunity to get acclimatised to the type of wickets which is very similar to their four-Test away tour against India.
Australia are without the services of Cameron Green and Mitchell Starc due to injuries, and there is a high possibility of Ashton Agar featuring in the playing XI along with Nathan Lyon in the absence of the all-rounder.
Ahead of the high-voltage clash, Pat Cummins shared insights on the pitch and revealed it will be a tad bit similar to India. "It's a huge connection to India. Fast bowling and reverse swing is going to come into it, which we can expect in India. Probably get more spin overs here, and our batters are probably going to face more spin here as well," he said, as quoted by ESPN Cricinfo.
"Even personally captaining here might be a little different to the last few Test matches. So it's a really good prep. Whatever you do there's going to be a strong connection to India, which is nice. It's not by purpose; it's just worked out that way," he further added.
The chief curator of the iconic stadium Adam Lewis, revealed he expects it to be a typical SCG wicket and said, "We're hoping for a traditional SCG pitch. It's not quite what we've seen in the past few years.
"A few of the players have told me it looks like a wicket from about ten years ago, which gave me a bit of confidence. It's thin on grass, a bit patchy and probably not the best-looking pitch that we've seen, but we're looking forward to it and we've done the best we can," he further added.
The Aussie skipper is also excited about the prospect of featuring in the final of the World Test Championship and sets his sight on a huge year ahead with plenty of away tours.
"That was always going to be a big goal. I think we've been playing fantastically, we've put ourselves in that position to earn that spot early which is a huge driver for us," Cummins said.
"We've got a huge year ahead, and I think even in these three weeks, it might be a good time to pause and think about what a great 12 months it's been for this team. Pakistan and Sri Lanka were two really good subcontinent tours, with the third one in India to come. 2023 is going to be a big year," he concluded.