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Oliver Caffrey

Australia begins bid for Test supremacy in India

Australia will begin their bid to become Test cricket's undisputed No.1 team in the same city they last secured the Border-Gavaskar trophy in India.

Pat Cummins' team will attempt to make history and end India's 11-year unbeaten streak in Test series' at home.

Australia already have the No.1 ranking but if they were to salute in India for the first time since 2004 it would elevate the team's status to greatness.

The first Test gets underway on Thursday at Nagpur's VCA Stadium, about 25 minutes away from the former Test ground in the city where an Adam Gilchrist-led team won 19 years ago to wrap up the series.

Australia dominated cricket from the mid-1990s to 2007, twice winning a record 16 Tests in a row and claiming three-straight ODI world cups.

But Gilchrist believes winning in India was near the pinnacle of Australia's golden generation of cricket.

"I think it was one, if not the highlights of that playing group's journey to secure victory in the country that had been sort of tormenting Australian cricket for 34 years," the Fox Cricket talent and commentator told AAP.

"Surprisingly, we had a wicket (in Nagpur) that sort of worked a little bit more towards our favour; I think there was some grass on it and had some decent pace and carry."

Former Australia captain Steve Waugh often referred to India as the 'final frontier', but he retired less than a year before the team's drought-breaking success.

"Immediately we reflected on some of the challenges we had," Gilchrist said.

"The moment we won, my mind cast back straight to Steve Waugh, and we were keen to speak to Steve on the phone, which we did, just because he helped build our knowledge base to get to where we want it to go.

"The fact that Ricky (Ponting) was there, albeit not playing at that point (due to injury), it was great to have him there because it was a real combined team effort of all senior players and our management staff."

Australia will enter the opening match of the four-Test series without injured quicks Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood, as well as allrounder Cameron Green.

Cummins will not reveal his XI until the toss on Thursday but young spinner Todd Murphy is firming to make his debut and partner star veteran Nathan Lyon on a turning pitch.

Scott Boland will almost certainly partner Cummins as Australia's only other quick in what would be the popular Victorian's first Test outside of Australia.

With Green still recovering from a broken finger, Australia need to choose between Peter Handscomb or Matt Renshaw at No.6.

Renshaw played in Australia's last Test in January but selectors could decide to pick the right-handed Handscomb to combat India's trio of spinners who plan to target left-handers David Warner, Usman Khawaja and Travis Head.

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