posted on 2018-11-04 09:35:35
posted by Nesara VJ
Image courtesy: Hindustan Times
An Indian team minus Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni will be taking on T20 specialists West Indies in a 3-match series starting November 4th at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata. After suffering defeats in the Test and the ODI series, the West Indian team will be looking to salvage pride by winning the T20 tournament. India, on the other hand, based on the squad selection for this series have started the preparation for the ICC T20 World Cup which is set to happen in Australia in 2020. Considering that the Australia T20 series would commence after this three match competition, the Indians would look to end this series on a winning note. Lucknow and Chennai will host the 2nd and 3rd T20 respectively.
Having selected a young squad, the Indian team management will be testing the bench in this series. Shreyas Iyer and Washington Sundar have come back to the squads while left-arm spinners Krunal Pandya and Shahbaz have got an opportunity to be a part of the Indian team. India has a number of all-rounder options in the team to attend to team balance issues for the T20 World Cup in 2020. India, despite their star players not playing, will be the favorites to win this series too. India has already announced the 12 man squad for the first game. Shahbaz Nadeem,Washington Sundar , Umesh Yadav and Shreyas Iyer have missed out on the final 12 which could also see Krunal Pandya play a game.
However, most of the eyes would be on Rishab Pant as to how would fill the big shoes left over By MS Dhoni. MS Dhoni can be considered as India's most experienced T20 player who was responsible for bringing the format very close to the Indian fans. He was a part of the first T20 match that India ever played and it would be the first time that he would be missing a game due to his form. He has missed only 10 T20's for India and hence Dinesh Karthik would be the only player in this squad who has represented India in its first ever T20.
The Carribean side will be boosted by the inclusion of Andre Russell, Kieron Pollard, Carlos Braithwaite, and Darren Bravo. Veteran Denesh Ramdin will keep wickets in this series. Most of these players have experience playing on the Indian pitches and they will provide a better competition than in the Test and the ODI series. It will not be a surprise if Windies come on top in this series as that has been the nature of the T20 game and the unpredictability of the Windies side. Many IPL franchises will also be watching players like Shimron Hetmyer and Oshane Thomas with the auctions coming up.
As seen from the past seasons of IPL, the big outfield at Eden Gardens might produce a low scoring encounter with the spinners dominating the game. India has the better spinners between the sides and hence, India will have an upper hand in this match . Captain Rohit Sharma will be licking his lips as Eden Gardens has always been a happy hunting ground fir him.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Kuldeep Yadav will be at their home turf when India takes on West Indies in the 2nd T-20 at Lucknow. The Erana International cricket stafium will be hosting its first ever international match on November 6th. A seating capacity of 50000 would make it as one of the bigger stadiums in India.
Chepauk will be missing MS Dhoni as the CSK captain might have made a decision about his T-20 future. The spin bowling assisting pitch could yet again tilt the game in the favour of the Indian team. However, an international game without MS will nevwr be the same in Chennai.
India Squad: Rohit Sharma (C), Shikhar, KL Rahul, DK, Manish, Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant (wk), Krunal Pandya, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Bumrah, Khaleel Ahmed, Umesh Yadav, Shahbaz Nadeem
Windies squad: Carlos Brathwaite (c), Fabian Allen, Darren Bravo, Shimron Hetmyer, Evin Lewis, Obed McCoy, Ashley Nurse, Keemo Paul, Khary Pierre, Kieron Pollard, Rovman Powell, Denesh Ramdin, Andre Russell, Sherfane Rutherford, Oshane Thomas
India has announced the final 12 which could see the debut of Baroda all-rounder Krunal Pandya. Rishab Pant will be handling the wicketkeeping duties and KL Rahul will play at Kohli's position. One of Chahal and Khaleel Ahhmed may miss out depending on Rohit's decision.
West Indies have been dealt a huge blow after Andre Russell was ruled out of the series owing to an injury. That could affect the balance as Windies might now have to play either a pure bastmen or a bowler in place of him. It could be a closely contested game if the experienced Pollard and Braithwaite can play well today.