Team India, who fought back to secure a convincing win, after some early mishaps, will look to seal the series when they face off Windies in the second fixture on November 6 (Tuesday) at Lucknow.
Meanwhile, Windies have a lot of positives to take going into the second game which will be the first international game in that stadium. Moreover, India also may not know the conditions or the wicket. Thus, in a way, it is an away game for both the sides.
However, both the sides need to work on few things before they clash against each other in the second fixture. The wicket at the Eden Gardens assisted fast bowlers, and Oshane Thomas made full use of it. He picked two wickets as Windies had India at 45 for four before the hosts bail their way out.
But their win didn’t hide their top-order worries; as all of Rohit Sharma, the stand-in captain, Shikhar Dhawan, and KL Rahul departed cheaply. Rishabh Pant, who is seen as MS Dhoni’s aggressor failed as he got out to a wild shot. Barring these stutters with the bat, India were good in Kolkata. Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who did not play the first game, may come back in the mix to bolster the bowling attack.
On the other hand, another batting collapse on this tour cost them the match. While Andre Russell’s injury created a big hole in the middle order, the trio of Darren Bravo (5), Rovman Powell (4) and captain Brathwaite (4) could not step up either.
Going into the second game, it will be imperative that the Windies put on a much-improved batting show and give the bowlers, who fared well on Sunday, some cushion.
Kuldeep Yadav (India): The young spinner has made it a habit of picking wickets almost every time he takes the ball for India in white-ball cricket. He lived upto his reputation on Sunday, picking up three wickets and breaking through the Windies line-up. His ability to extract turn out of practically any surface makes him a lethal prospect for any opposition.
Oshane Thomas (Windies): Although a bit wayward at times, Thomas’ rise has been noteworthy. Capable of breaching the 90mph barrier consistently and extracting movement off the surface as well as in the air at that pace, Thomas could trouble the Indian top order again.
The hosts are likely to make a forced change as Umesh Yadav will make way for Bhuvneshwar Kumar. Otherwise, they will retain the same squad who played good cricket at the Eden Gardens.
Predicted XI: Rohit Sharma (c), Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Rishabh Pant, Manish Pandey, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Krunal Pandya, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Khaleel Ahmed.
The visitors are likely to retain their best possible XI; however, their batsmen will have a task in hand.
Predicted XI: Rovman Powell, Darren Bravo, Shai Hope, Shimron Hetmyer, Denesh Ramdin (wk), Kieron Pollard, Carlos Brathwaite (c), Keemo Paul, Fabian Allen, Khary Pierre, Oshane Thomas
Windies had a lot of positives from the opening game at Kolkata, which will boost their confidence. However, with experience and conditions by their side, India have a fair chance to go all the way.
The hosts have a balanced side in comparisons to the team from the Caribbeans.
As a result, it is likely that India will wrap-up the series in the second game at Lucknow.
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