About the Match
India is 1-0 ahead in the ODI series against England at the moment, routine you might think, however, nothing could be further from the truth. It took a monumental effort from India’s batsmen to be able to reach that scoreline. Can England push the hosts even further or will this defeat deflate their sails for the games to come?
2nd ODI Preview
The Indian One Day International team is one that is currently in the middle of a flux. A lot of changes are taking place, however, one thing is becoming an unwavering certainty. Virat Kohli will score runs.
The man and new India ODI skipper started 2017 much like he ended 2016 and smashed one of the most brilliant centuries seen in ODI cricket. Not too many can think about chasing 350 after being 63 for 4 but Kohli said he thought of nothing but victory.
Virat Kohli, however, and in this match, Kedar Jadhav, papered over a few glaring weaknesses in the Indian team. The opening partnership of Dhawan and Rahul is not settled. Both of them are yet to truly own this place and the pressure is on them to do so before the first choice opener, Rohit Sharma, makes his comeback.
The middle order of M.S. Dhoni and Yuvraj Singh is iffy as well. Dhoni is trying to rediscover his best form while Yuvraj is in the middle of yet another comeback. Kedar Jadhav made a brilliant hundred in the last match but he only 14 matches old in International cricket.
Take Kohli out early and the Indian team suddenly seems very beatable.
The bowling for India’s ODI team is also far from settled. Ravi Ashwin may be the best Test bowler in the world right now but his limited over form has been poor for a while now. He recorded his worst ever ODI figures in the last match.
Hardik Pandya is a promising young fast bowling all-rounder but he can be put under pressure and Umesh Yadav continues to leak runs. Jasprit Bumrah, India’s designated death bowler also failed to stop the England batsmen from running amok.
Bhuvaneshwar Kumar may come into the team in place of Yadav for this next match. We think that backing Dhoni and Kohli to get 50 plus scores in this match will be a good bet to make while picking Bumrah to pick the most wickets in the innings.
India’s fielding was lackluster in the last match with the captain making some uncharacteristic errors in the field and they would want to make amends knowing that their batting will not bail them out every time.
The English team may have lost this match, however, more of their players showed glimpses of form than on the Indian side. Jason Roy stroked his way to a sparkling 73, Joe Root top scored with 78 and Ben Stokes absolutely smashed the bowling towards the death overs. Jos Buttler and Moeen Ali also got in some valuable batting practice.
Back Roy to get a big score in the second match one again but we think that Eoin Morgan is likely to be the top scorer for England.
England might go into this match with the same team but would want desperately to be able to chase this time. Losing after making 350 will make any batting side think that nothing they get will be enough.
The ground also favors teams batting second and dew is expected to play a major part in this match. You can be sure that the team who wins the toss will bat second and is most likely to win.
In fact, if England wins the toss and bats second then place a bet on them winning early. India is much more dependent on its spinners getting something from the surface and they will be rendered totally ineffective by the dew.
England’s bowling had an off day in the face of a tremendous onslaught at Pune but would be happy with the form of Chris Woakes. He was easily the best bowler on display even though he did not take any wickets.
We think his luck will change and he would be our pick for the top wicket taker in the England side. Adil Rashid had a horror outing and was unable to exert any sort of pressure on to the Indian batsmen. They knew that a loose ball was always on its way and they would just wait for it to take full toll.
England could be looking to swap him out with someone like Liam Plunkett.
We also expect another high scoring match to be played out on a flat deck. The last international game here was played between India and Sri Lanka in 2014 where India made 363 batting first and won the game by 169 runs.
This is a must-win game for the English side and a loss here would render the third match of the series a dead rubber. For a team that came with a fearsome reputation, England would not want to be knocked out in such an anticlimactic fashion.
India, on the other hand, is led by a captain who is ruthless when it comes to winning. Nothing less than 3-0 will do.
This is a difficult match to call, however, we think that England will stage a comeback and be able to square the series 1-1. Our advice would be to wait till the toss is done and bet on the team batting second, though.
Winner: England, 2.75 @ Bet on England now