India prepare for a positive performance in One day series against England
After a humiliating defeat in the Test series, India is looking for a turnaround in the upcoming 5 match One Day series against England. The visitors will play the first match of the series on Monday, 25 August at Country Ground, Bristol. After the embarrassing 3-1 Test series loss against England, India now await the new coaching staff to bring some good fortune to the side. Newly-appointed assistant coaches Sanjay Bangar, Bharat Arun and fielding coach R Sridhar will look to bring the team back into winning track under the new team director Ravi Shastri although it will certainly not be an easy task.
MS Dhoni must be feeling a bit relaxed after the tour has shifted to one of his favourite formats. He has the opportunity to stop the critics with some brilliant captaincy which seriously lacked in the recently concluded Test series that India lost 1-3. India will however miss the services of Cheteshwar Pujara who has been given a nod by BCCI to play county cricket to improve his techniques against seam and swing. India’s task will not be easy as in one day matches, two new balls will be used from both ends and the English bowlers will like to exploit the weaknesses of the Indian batsmen as they did in the Test series.
In the bowling department, once again the onus will be on Bhuvneshwar Kumar to pick up early wickets. He was the workhorse in the test series. With preparations for the ODI World Cup expected to take swing now, Kumar was not given rest from this ODI series. It remains to be seen whether this was a good move or will it further hamper his fitness ahead of a long cricket season coming ahead. Shami looked out of form in the longer format but he needs to perform well in the ODIs if he has to partner Kumar in the next world cup. Ashwin will probably be the lone spinner in the playing XI. However Karn Sharma, if he gets a game, would be an interesting prospect to watch out for.
England will be brimming with the confidence they obtained from the Test series. The inclusion of hard hitting batsman Alex Hales will give them a good chance to score quick runs at the top of the order. All rounder Ravi Bopara hasn’t been included in the squad. Bopara, the 29-year-old Essex all-rounder, was clearly upset. Bopara received that call from James Whitaker, the national selector, half an hour before the squad was announced on Monday evening. “He told me: ‘Look, you know you played well for the Lions but you’re not going to be featured in this squad. That doesn’t rule you out for future tours,’” Bopara said. “He told me I’d get a call from Peter Moores (the England coach) to explain further and that was it.