Matthew Wade will captain Australia in the absence of Aaron Finch at the SCG, where Daniel Sams is making his international debut in the second Twenty20 against India.
India have opted to bowl.
Australia have made three changes as they seek to level the three-match T20 series, calling up Sams, AJ Tye and Marcus Stoinis in place of Finch, Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood.
Starc has been released from the squad on compassionate grounds, while Hazlewood has a sore back.
“Back-to-back games, so we’re giving him (Hazlewood) a bit of rest,” Wade said at the toss.
By far the most interesting call made by Australia was the appointment of Wade as the nation’s 11th skipper in the shortest format.
Finch suffered a hip injury during Australia’s 11-run loss in the series opener.
Steve Smith was the only other man in the T20 squad to have ever captained Australia, having performed the job in all three forms of the game before the Cape Town cheating scandal.
Smith is eligible to return to the captaincy, having completed the 24-month leadership ban that Cricket Australia imposed as part of its response to the ball-tampering saga.
But the gun batsman, who recently captained Rajasthan throughout the IPL, was overlooked.
Sams has been rewarded for a superb BBL campaign in 2019-20, when he claimed a league-best 30 wickets at 15.4 for Sydney Thunder.
The 28-year-old paceman was part of Australia’s enlarged touring party that visited England earlier this year and took part in the IPL, working with mastercoach Ricky Ponting at Delhi Capitals.
India have rested fast bowler Mohammed Shami and left spearhead Jasprit Bumrah on the sidelines.
Australia XI: Matthew Wade (capt), Marcus Stoinis, Moises Henriques, D’Arcy Short, Glenn Maxwell, Steve Smith, Daniel Sams, Sean Abbott, Mitchell Swepson, AJ Tye, Adam Zampa.
India XI: KL Rahul, Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli (capt), Shreyas Iyer, Sanju Samson, Hardik Pandya, Washington Sundar, Deepak Chahar, T Natarajan, Shardul Thakur, Yuzvendra Chahal.