India eyeing improved show from batsmen in 2nd ODI

After narrowly escaping defeat in the series opener, India would look to guard against complacency and hope for an improved showing from their batsmen when they take on the West Indies in the second cricket one-dayer here on Friday.

The opening match of the five-match series in Cuttack two days ago saw an inexperienced Indian bowling restrict the Caribbean side for a paltry 211 for nine.

But chasing the modest total, India's much-fancied batting line-up faltered and if not for comeback man Rohit Sharma's 99-ball 72, the home team could have been down 0-1 in the series.

India's inexperienced pace trio of R Vinay Kumar (1/27), Varun Aaron (2/47) and Umesh Yadav (2/33) not only excelled with the ball in Cuttack but also showed amazing calmness while batting to set up the thrilling one-wicket victory for the hosts.

Needing 11 runs off 23 balls under tense situation, the last wicket pair of Aaron and Yadav kept their calm and saw India home with seven balls to spare.

And the Indian thinktank obviously will not want a repeat of the Cuttack episode, especially on a run-belter at the Dr Y S Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium, where the hosts have an all-win record in the three matches they played here.

India's stand-in captain Virender Sehwag, who is leading the side in place of regular skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, has already cautioned the batsmen after the Cuttack match, saying there should not be any excuse for poor show.

"There is no excuse for anybody not scoring runs," he said about India's batting collapse in the first ODI. We have to back our batting. We have some exciting youngsters playing for last three four years," Sehwag said.

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