IND vs WI 2022, 1st ODI: India's fringe players prepare to battle Windies in a format fighting for context
India and Windies will lock horns in three ODIs starting Friday. With ODIs fighting for their context, the fringe Indian players would look to prove their point.
India's fringe players will get some valuable game time as Team India takes on the Windies in the first of the three-match series in the format, which is struggling to fit for its context, the One-Day Internationals (ODIs). The opening game will happen at the Queen's Park Oval in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago. English all-rounder Ben Stokes' surprise announcement of retirement from the ODIs has fuelled a debate on feverish international scheduling, especially in bilateral cricket. He has clarified that playing all three formats regularly is not sustainable anymore. Clubbed between Tests and T20Is, the ODIs have been shuddering for space in the packed international calendar for quite some time.
The Windies came to India for three ODIs and as many T20Is in February this year, while the two teams meet again for eight limited-overs contests, including five T20Is. In a year that possesses that ICC T20 World Cup, ODIs have less significance. However, the players getting the opportunities without the senior players would be desperate to make an impact.
Shikhar Dhawan, who nowadays plays just the ODIs, will be leading India for the second time in his career as regular skipper Rohit Sharma has been rested for the series. The likes of Mohammad Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Rishabh Pant, Hardik Pandya and Virat Kohli have also been given a short break from the hectic international calendar.
The England series proved that it is difficult for one to keep performing without playing at the highest level regularly. Dhawan, known for his consistency, also looked far from his best. Thus, seeing who opens alongside him in this ODI series-opener will be absorbing. Opener Shubman Gill is back into the team and, along with Dhawan, can make a left-hand, right-hand combination. However, Ishan Kishan and Ruturaj Gaikwad could also act as openers.
The Indian team management will struggle to pick up the middle order. The in-form Deepak Hooda could bat at number three. Suryakumar Yadav is an actuality in the playing XI, leaving the management to decide between Shreyas Iyer and Sanju Samson. Pressure will be on the former, who has been struggling with the short ball of late.
Without all-rounder Hardik Pandya, Shardul Thakur is India's pace bowling all-rounder alternative. The pitch in Port of Spain tends to assist the spinners, thus allowing leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal to play in all three games alongside fellow leg-spinner Ravindra Jadeja, who can be a good all-rounder option. In contrast, orthodox spinner Axar Patel could be the third option.
Pacer Arshdeep Singh, who did not feature in the ODIs in England due to an abdominal strain, is likely to debut on Friday, as he sweated himself out heavily at the nets on Wednesday. Fellow pacers Prasidh Krishna and Mohammad Siraj are also expected to start, as the two are frontline seamers.
The Windies is reeling from its 0-3 ODI loss at home against Bangladesh. All-rounder Jason Holder has returned and is sure to give the side a much-needed balance, which Nicholas Pooran is leading. The Caribbean side would aim to improve in one paramount factor, as it has recently failed to bat the complete 50 overs, especially since the 2019 ICC World Cup. It has batted full 50 overs six times in 39 innings, which is undoubtedly a concern for the side.
India: Shikhar Dhawan (c), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shubman Gill, Deepak Hooda, Suryakumar Yadav, Shreyas Iyer, Ishan Kishan (wk), Sanju Samson (wk), Ravindra Jadeja (vc), Shardul Thakur, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Avesh Khan, Prasidh Krishna, Mohd Siraj and Arshdeep Singh.
Windies: Nicholas Pooran (c & wk), Shai Hope (vc & wk), Shamarh Brooks, Keacy Carty, Jason Holder, Akeal Hosein, Alzarri Joseph, Brandon King, Kyle Mayers, Gudakesh Motie, Keemo Paul, Rovman Powell and Jayden Seales.
Date and day: July 22, 2022 (Friday)
Venue: Queen's Park Oval, Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago
Time: 7:00 PM (IST)
Where to watch (TV): DD Sports
Where to watch (Online): Fancode
(With inputs from PTI)