INDIA: There will be no ODI World Cup this year. The West Indies vs India series is not a World Cup Super League match. Less than a week ago, both teams completed their last 50-over assignments. What can one, therefore, anticipate from these three ODIs?
India rested Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Rishabh Pant, Hardik Pandya, Mohammed Shami, and Jasprit Bumrah after winning both white-ball series in England, while KL Rahul is still recovering from hernia surgery. As a result, several of their backup players—playing under acting captain Shikhar Dhawan—will receive an entire series rather than just the occasional game.
On the other hand, West Indies has one of the poorest win-loss records in ODI cricket this year and is now on a six-match losing skid in the format. Their captain Nicholas Pooran and coach Phil Simmons have urged their players to ensure they bat out the full 50 overs, something they have recently struggled with, to get things back on track.
West Indies has batted the first 12 times in ODI cricket since January 2021; nine times, they could not complete their allotted number of overs.
Jason Holder is back after taking a break for the Bangladesh series, which is good news for the hosts. His participation will give the side the much-needed experience in the lower middle order and the bowling department.
Players to watch out for:
Nicholas Pooran: One of the few bright spots for West Indies during their white-ball series against Bangladesh was Nicholas Pooran. Pooran will need to take the initiative once more if the hosts challenge India. The skipper of West Indies has a winning record against India, scoring 354 runs in nine innings at an average of 44.25 and a strike rate of 107.59, which is advantageous for the team.
Shikhar Dhawan: Although he is the series’ acting captain, his recent batting performance hasn’t been terrific. Dhawan has 112 runs at an average of 28 and a strike rate of 61.53 in his previous five ODIs. He last reached a hundred in the format 20 innings ago. India will need Dhawan to regain his form because they lack seasoned players.
Keemo Paul’s hamstring issue prevented him from bowling in the last One-Day International against Bangladesh. Simmons is content with his progress, but West Indies will decide whether to include him before the game. They might not want to push him because the squad also comprises Holder and Kyle Mayers, two seam-bowling all-rounders. Keacy Carty may be the other member of the 13-person squad to be left off in addition to Paul.
West Indies: (Probable XI): 1 Shai Hope (wk), 2 Brandon King, 3 Shamarh Brooks, 4 Kyle Mayers, 5 Nicholas Pooran (capt), 6 Rovman Powell, 7 Jason Holder, 8 Akeal Hosein, 9 Alzarri Joseph, 10 Gudakesh Motie, 11 Jayden Seales.
India must make a lot of decisions like:
- Who will be Shikhar Dhawan’s opening partner?
- How will the seam-bowling lineup appear?
- Does Shardul Thakur have a chance at No. 8?
To open with Dhawan, they can pick from Ruturaj Gaikwad, Ishan Kishan, and Shubman Gill. For seamers, they have Mohammed Siraj, Avesh Khan, Prasidh Krishna, and Arshdeep Singh. Ravindra Jadeja, meanwhile, is guaranteed to have a niggle that may prevent him from playing in the first game of the series, at the very least.
India: (Probable XI): 1 Shikhar Dhawan (capt), 2 Ruturaj Gaikwad/Ishan Kishan (wk), 3 Shreyas Iyer, 4 Deepak Hooda, 5 Sanju Samson (wk), 6 Suryakumar Yadav, 7 Axar Patel, 8 Shardul Thakur, 9 Avesh Khan/Prasidh Krishna, 10 Yuzvendra Chahal, 11 Mohammed Siraj.
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