Marsh and Warner set for opener's battle at World Cup

Mitch Marsh's stunning success as an opener in India has opened the door for him to retain the role at the World Cup, but where does that leave David Warner?

MITCHELL MARSH. Picture: Sydney Seshibedi/Gallo Images/Getty Images

Mitch Marsh appears to be in the box seat to open at this year's World Cup in India, but he expects his "little mate" will edge him out of the role soon.

One of the many positives to come out of Australia's 2-1 ODI series win in India was the huge success of Marsh as an opener.

It was the first time Marsh had slotted into the role in ODI cricket and he ended the three-match series with an average of 97, plus a strike rate of 131.

Marsh's brute hitting during the initial 10-over Powerplay was a huge weapon.

And even in Wednesday's series decider when he wasn't quite in his groove, Marsh still managed to peel off 47 runs from as many balls in a 21-run win.

Warner missed the first two games through injury.

When he did return for game three, he was relegated to No.4 in the order to allow Marsh and Travis Head to retain their opening spots.

It was just the second time in Warner's decorated 142-match ODI career he didn't open.

Marsh played as a batter-only in India to allow him more time to recover from ankle surgery.

Whether he can manage a workload of bowling significant overs and opening the batting at this year's World Cup remains to be seen.

Marsh loved his time as opener in India, but he expects Warner will get another crack there soon.

"I've got my little mate over there that will probably come back in at some stage," Marsh said.

"He's been an incredible player for Australia for a long time and probably one of the best ODI openers ever.

"I'm sure he'll slot back in at some stage. But I think it's important that we're all flexible.

"Before the first game as a group we spoke about this is the start of our campaign for the World Cup and certain guys are going to bat in different positions at times.

"It's really important we have a squad mentality. With Davey out for the first couple of games it was my opportunity."

Another big learning out of the tour of India is Australia must play spinner Ashton Agar in the spin-friendly Indian conditions.

Agar was left out for the opening two matches but his double-wicket strike in game three - he snared the key scalps of Virat Kohli (54) and Suryakumar Yadav (0) in consecutive balls - helped turn the match Australia's way.

The 29-year-old, who returned home early from the Test series after being overlooked for selection, finished with 2-41 from 10 overs.

He combined brilliantly with fellow spinner Adam Zampa, who snared 4-45.

"Ash is one of my closest mates and he's one of the most resilient characters that I know," Marsh said of Agar.

"That's why he's able to come in and perform whenever he plays for Australia."

Paceman Mitchell Starc suffered an injury scare when he hurt a finger on his left hand while taking an outfield catch on Wednesday.

Starc, who suffered a fracture to his left middle finger late last year, went off the field for treatment but was able to return and complete his full 10 overs.