The West Indies batsmen shocked everyone when they pipped the Indian bowlers with ease in Chennai in the first ODI. Chasing on a tough track, the West Indies comfortably chased down 287 with 8 wickets to spare. Shimron Hetmyer and Shai Hope both compiled comprehensive centuries in order to complete a dominant batting display. India have a lot many questions to be answered before the second ODI gets underway.
The most satisfying thing about the Windies’ show in their last game was their attitude under pressure. They were treated to many pressure situations in the first innings when Rishabh Pant and Shreyas Iyer looked set to take India post 300. They did break that partnership and ensured that they never let the other batsmen get away. In the second innings, they got off to a shaky start losing Sunil Ambrose inside 3 overs. The likes of Hetmyer and Hope soaked in the pressure very well having compiled 218 run partnership which totally tilted the game in their favor.
India, on the other hand, will first look to address their bowling issues. On a slow track which was exploited very well by the Windies bowlers, India failed to execute their plans. Their constant length balls outside the off stump to Hetmyer proved to be costly as the left-hander managed to notch up his career best score. They were sloppy in the field and Iyer dropped the crucial catch of Hetmyer when he was on 106 and West Indies were still 102 runs away. Their middle-order came to their rescue in the first innings, much to their delight but in recent times, in the absence of Bumrah, their bowling has looked a bit pale in limited overs cricket.
With not much time left, India need to sort out their issues and keep their plans in place if they are to avoid a massive series loss against the West Indies.
It was an enthralling win for them and they are unlikely to make any changes to the squad that upset a strong Indian line-up. Their bowling was on point on Sunday and so was their batting. However, they will be closely monitoring Evin Lewis. Should he be match-fit, he’s likely to come in for Sunil Ambrose. The rest of the squad looks balanced and they have a strong chance of completing a historic series win against India.
Probable XI: Lewis/Ambrose, Hope, Hetmyer, Chase, Pooran (WK), Pollard (C), Holder, Cottrell, Paul, Walsh, Joseph.
Their bowling looked pale and there is no doubt about that. Their plan to leave out Chahal on a slow track backfired heavily on them. They are to likely bring back Chahal into the playing XI in order to give the Kul-Cha combo another go. For now, they need not worry about their batting as the middle-order seems to be shaping well with Shreyas Iyer in it. However, they will need to leave out either of Dube or Jadeja if Chahal has to come back. It will be interesting to see who gets left out.
Probable XI: Rohit Sharma, Rahul, Kohli (C), Iyer, Pant (WK), Jadhav, Jadeja, Chahar, Dube/Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Shami.
Venue and Weather
This venue has been a hunting ground for the likes of Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli. The side batting first is likely to find themselves in a good place. With tomorrow being a weekday, a sell-out crowd isn’t expected. As far as the weather is concerned, a slight chance of precipitation is present but it is minimal. The temperatures will be down to 22 as the game progresses.
It is a bat-first pitch. India won’t have a problem batting first or second but since West Indies seem to prefer to chase, they might go for it. Moreover tomorrow in all probability could end up being the series decider and having said that, West Indies will look to play in their comfort zone.