About the Match
The first match was washed out because of incessant rain and the forecast for the second one does not look too good either. In the time that cricket was possible though we got a good look at some of the tactics that both the teams will employ and some changes that can be expected going forward.
There were just about 40 overs that were possible before rain stopped play but the West Indies would have been happy with the way things were progressing. India was only going at 5.05 runs per over and finding it difficult to score.
Kohli had spent some time at the crease but did not show the fluency associated with him while Dhoni had just come to the crease. A couple of quick wickets or maybe even rain for a lesser time could have meant the West Indies had a real shot to chase down India’s score.
Jason Holder, Devendra Bishoo, Alzarri Joseph and Miguel Cummins were all good with only Joseph leaking some runs to Shikhar Dhawan. The West Indies may not have got too many wickets but this attack cannot be underestimated.
There does not seem to be any reason for the West Indies to change their team and we don’t expect them to. The like of Evin Lewis, Shai Hope, and Jason Mohammad would be keen to show what they can do given the opportunity especially since pulling off an upset against India is sure to garner them attention.
This is an inexperienced team and one that has been struggling for some time now, but the seeds of a solid unit are definitely present.
Shikhar Dhawan continued his purple patch and top scored for India with a fluent 87 off just 92 balls but it was AJinkya Rahane’s form that would have pleased the Indian management the most. The recalled opener has been out of favor over the last few months and is firmly the third opener behind Dhawan and Rohit Sharma.
This series is all about trying new players for India and it looks like they will have to a little more aggressive to give their players a chance. Yuvraj Singh and MS Dhoni have been struggling to get enough game time themselves and so it is unlikely that Rishabh Pant is going to be able to get any time unless he is moved up the order.
He did not make the team for the first match but we think the Indian team management could include him for the next one.
Kuldeep Yadav was handed a debut but obviously did not get a chance to bowl and is certain to be playing again.
This is a difficult kind of series for India that is not going to get much attention if they win but a loss is going to raise serious questions. The management is also under pressure to give lesser experienced players a chance possibly leading to a change in the usual order of things.
Pitch and Conditions
The pitch for the first match started out with some bounce but seemed to slow up very quickly. With the rain around and the lack of time for preparation, we think this pitch will be even slower than the first one.
West Indies showed enough fight in the first match to make the possibility of an upset very real. This game could well be a shortened one if it gets completed at all and we would recommend backing the upset.
Shorter the game, the more chance West Indies has of winning it.
West Indies to win