SYDNEY: Australian captain Ricky Ponting won the toss and chose to bat in the second Border-Gavaskar Trophy cricket Test against India at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Wednesday.
The Australians, emphatic 337-run winners in the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne last weekend, named an unchanged side.
But India were forced into a change with left-arm fast bowler Zaheer Khan ruled out with a heel injury and replaced by right-hand fast-medium bowler Ishant Sharma.
The Indians left intact their batting order from the Melbourne loss, meaning Rahul Dravid will again open the innings with Wasim Jaffer.
Ponting's team can hold on to the Border-Gavaskar Trophy with a record-equalling 16th consecutive Test victory.
Australia have been undefeated in Tests since beating South Africa by 184 runs at this ground two years ago.
The existing record was set under Ponting's predecessor, Steve Waugh, from October 1999 to February 2001.
India have won just four Tests into their ninth Australian tour, but pushed Steve Waugh's Australians all the way in the drawn 1-1 last series tour here in 2003-04.
Fine weather is forecast for the opening day.
Australia: Phil Jaques, Matthew Hayden, Ricky Ponting (captain), Michael Clarke, Mike Hussey, Andrew Symonds, Adam Gilchrist, Brad Hogg, Brett Lee, Stuart Clark, Mitchell Johnson. Shaun Tait (12th man)
India: Wasim Jaffer, Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman, Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Yuvraj Singh, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Anil Kumble (captain), Ishant Sharma, RP Singh, Harbhajan Singh.
Umpires: Mark Benson (ENG) and Steve Bucknor (WIS)
TV umpire Bruce Oxenford (AUS)
Match referee: Mike Procter (RSA)