IND vs WI: Dominance under threat
West Indies eye first ODI series win in India since 2002-03 whereas Kohli & Co look to get bowling combination right in batting-friendly Vizag to open account.
Visakhapatnam: India will have to get their bowling combination right after the hiding in Chennai when they take on a buoyant West Indies in the second ODI here on Wednesday, aiming to keep the three-match series alive. A series win here would certainly raise Kieron Pollard's profile from a T20 freelancer to an able leader but a blinder from Rohit Sharma or another hundred from Virat Kohli on a batting belter can't be ruled out.
It wasn't a nightmarish bowling performance in Chennai by any stretch of imagination but not being able to defend 287 on a slow Chennai track left the team management with a few points to ponder. With the par-score at the ACA-VDCA stadium here set to be in the 320-plus range, a fifth specialist bowling option could be mulled upon considering the plight the hosts faced in the last game with Shimron Hetmyer and Shai Hope beautifully planning the chase with their respective hundreds.
The biggest reason for the setback in Chennai was spinners Ravindra Jadeja (0-58 in 10 overs) and Kuldeep Yadav (0-45 in 10 overs) being rendered ineffective. Hope and Hetmyer didn't murder the attack but did enough during the middle overs to ensure 103 runs came without taking any adventurous route. They chose their bowlers perfectly and as a result, debutant Shivam Dube leaked 68 runs in 7.5 overs, indicating that he is certainly a "work in progress" as far as his bowling is concerned.
However, it's a tricky path for India to tweak their playing XI considering what exactly they have in their reserves. They have Mayank Agarwal, the reserve opener, who is unlikely to get a chance as Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul are set at the top. Then they have Manish Pandey, the reserve middle-order batsman, who can only be replaced at No. 6 in place of Jadhav. The questions that people are raising is about Jadhav not being given another go after he was hit for 11 in his solitary over.
Did you know?
All tied up at Vizag
The last time India and West Indies played an ODI at the Dr YS Rajasekhara Reddy Cricket Stadium, Visakhapatnam on October 24, 2018, the match ended in a tie with both teams locked at 321 after 50 overs. Opting to bat, India were powered by skipper Virat Kohli's unbeaten 157. For the visitors, Shai Hope led the chase with 123 not out. Shimron Hetmyer contributed 94.
No. of ODIs India have lost consecutively. If they lose today, it will be the first time since 1988 they would have lost five straight ODIs at home
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