India v England ODI series preview
After an exciting 5 match T20I series, it’s time for the 3 matches ODI series for ODI world champions England and strong challengers India and this one too is expected to be a closely fought series.
England will be missing the services of their leading fast bowler Jofra Archer, who after a grueling T20I series has been rested with an injured elbow and will also be doubtful for IPL. This will undoubtedly reduce the bowling firepower of the world champions as Archer could have made a difference with his pace and other skills. However, England has plenty to choose from and probably will field Reece Topley as Archer’s replacement in the series.
England is also likely to go back to their World cup opening pair of Jason Roy and Johny Bairstow at the top and play Buttler in the lower middle order. Since Joe Root is also rested, batting allrounder Liam Livingstone may bat at 3 followed by Ben Stokes and Morgan. Stokes definitely needs to bat higher in the order to get more game time to unfurl his shots and create better impact. Morgan needs to fire after a quiet T20 series. There could also be a case of playing Sam Billings in XI due to his good batting skills against spin.
Moeen Ali could finally get a spot in the XI along with Rashid and Sam Curran should start in the XI with Mark Wood providing the raw pace.
The England XI is likely to be: Roy, Bairstow, Livingstone, Stokes, Morgan, Buttler, Moeen, Sam Curran, Adil Rashid, Mark Wood, Topley.
India should get back with their traditional opening pair for ODIs and Virat Kohli has also reiterated in the pre-match press conference that there is no debate whatsoever with Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan opening in the 3 ODIs.
Kohli, Iyer, and one of Pant or Rahul should constitute the middle order. It will make sense to rest Pant as he has been continuously playing since the Australian test series and that will also give Rahul more time to recover his form.
After his brilliant T20 debut , it will be interesting to see whether Surya Kumar Yadav debuts in the 1st ODI .
Hardik Pandya should be at number 6 followed by the bowlers. Bhuvneshwar will obviously spearhead the bowling and we might see the ODI debut for Mohammed Siraj after his recent test match exploits. Natarajan is also a possibility in XI with his left-arm angle. We may see Shardul playing as a bowling all-rounder. Hence Prasidh Krishna may have to wait on the sidelines a bit longer. Also interesting to see whether Krunal Pandya with his left-arm spin starts ahead of Sundar. Yazuvendra Chahal is likely to start as the main spinner possibly followed by Kuldeep.
Probable India XI :
Rohit , Dhawan, Kohli, Iyer, Rahul / Pant, Hardik, Krunal/ Sundar, Shardul, Bhuvneshwar, Siraj/ Natarajan, Chahal.
All the 3 matches to be played at Pune at the MCA stadium from 23 March 2021 onwards. The pitch is expected to provide runs and the outfield is small. The temperature is likely to be around the mid-thirties.
India Squad: Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli(c), Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant(w), Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Shardul Thakur, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, T Natarajan, Yuzvendra Chahal, Suryakumar Yadav, KL Rahul, Washington Sundar, Shubman Gill, Mohammed Siraj, Prasidh Krishna, Kuldeep Yadav
England Squad: Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow, Liam Livingstone, Eoin Morgan(c), Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler(w), Moeen Ali, Sam Curran, Tom Curran, Adil Rashid, Mark Wood, Sam Billings, Reece Topley, Matthew Parkinson.