Mumbai: Rampaging India will look to carry on its winning run, having defeated heavy weights Australia, inconsistent Pakistan, World Cup exiting South Africa, West Indies and win-less Afghanistan who nearly handed India its first defeat. India are just one point away from entering the semi-finals. India are currently placed at second, after winning five games from seven matches (including one wash-out).
On the other hand, England will look to resume their World Cup campaign on track, after suffering humiliating defeats at the hands of Australia and Sri Lanka. England will be hoping that aggressive opener Jason Roy regains 100 per cent fitness ahead of the match as Roy will be providing the flying start for the team.
England are currently sitting at fifth, having won four out of their seven games, while losing the other three. England who are on eight points need to win their upcoming matches against India and against New Zealand to avail any chance of qualification.
So far the Indian unit has had no big problems, their batting looks strong, with Rohit Sharma getting two hundreds (122 against South Africa and 140 against Pakistan), the top order looks all sorted. Along with Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul too has established himself as an opener after scoring vital 57 in the last match against Pakistan.
Now that Dhawan has been ruled out of the 2019 World Cup, KL Rahul will be expected to anchor the innings, with Rohit Sharma will be the aggressive opener. KL already has notched up his maiden hundred during the warm up match against Bangladesh. In the match against West Indies, KL scored 48, but he failed to convert it to a big score.
During the match against Pakistan, we saw KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma cooperation and coordinating with each other. So it seems that the duo is working on improving their communication. If we talk about the middle order, then, the middle order also has been in good touch with captain Kohli getting 82 against the Australians, 77 against the Pakistanis, 67 versus Afghanistan, and 72 against Indies.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni also showed his prime form when he slammed a hundred along with KL Rahul to guide India to their victory during their warm up match versus the Bangladeshis. However, during the match against Afghanistan, Dhoni played a slow knock of 28 which earned him heavy criticisms. However, in the next match against West Indies, Dhoni played a vital knock of 50 off 60 balls.
Now, the real question remains is who will bat at number four – will it be Vijay Shankar, Dinesh Karthik or World Cup ousted player, Rishabh Pant?. If we talk about the lower order, then, Ravindra Jadeja and Hardik Pandya have been in good form as the duo formed a small partnership to take the Indian side towards a paltry score of 179 against the Kiwis.
Hardik Pandya again showed his brilliant batting skills as his quick cameo of 48 took the Indians to a huge score of 352 against the Aussies. Pandya again came back with a quick fire 46 to help India post a decent total of 268/7. However, during the warm up match against the Black Caps, we saw the Indians suffered a major batting collapse majorly due to the great bowling by Kiwi pacers, Trent Boult and Matt Henry.
Coming to the bowling section, so far, the bowling department has been doing well, but the bowlers needs to up their ante as over reliance on Jasprit Bumrah could turn out to be a huge difference for the Indian side. During the match against Australia, Bhuvneshwar Kumar picked up three important wickets, barring that match Bhuvneshwar kumar has failed to pick up wickets.
Mohammed Shami played a crucial role in India’s 11 run victory over Afghanistan. Shami picked three important wickets on the trot to become the second Indian after Chetan Sharma to pick up a hat-trick in the World Cup. In Bhuvneshwar kumar’s absence Mohammed Shami has done tremendous job as he picked three crucial wickets against the West Indies to help India thrash the Caribbeans by 125 runs.
In the match against Pakistan, Kuldeep Yadav is expected turned out to be the game changer for India as he picked up three crucial wickets. However, in the previous games only Chahal has been able to scalp wickets during crucial times, while Kuldeep has conceded runs. After the game versus Pakistan, it has become evident that India will play Kuldeep and Chahal. Kuldeep is slowly regaining his form as he picked up one wicket in the last match against Windies, while Chahal picked up two.
India also has an extra spinner in Kedar Jadhav, who got back to form after his vital knock of 52 stretched India’s total to 224. While, in terms of bowling, Kedar was smashed all over the park in his one-over spell against Australia However, after seeing the pitch, it is evident that the Indian unit will go with its spin pair (Kulcha).
England will look to resume their World Cup campaign on track, after suffering humiliating defeats at the hands of Australia and Sri Lanka.England will be hoping that aggressive opener Jason Roy regains 100 per cent fitness ahead of the match as Roy will be providing the flying start for the team. England who are on eight points need to win their upcoming matches against India and against New Zealand to avail any chance of qualification.
England’s strength lies on their aggressive batting approach. The flying starts are generally provided by dashing Jason Roy and Jonny Bairstow, following which the platform is set for Root, Morgan, Stokes and Buttler to take England towards a huge total.
However, during the Pakistan match, it was seen that Jofra Archer, Chris Woakes and Mark Wood were guilty of bowling short or wide balls more than they should have, and it allowed the Pakistani batsmen to throw their arms freely. While during the games against Sri Lanka and Australia, we saw that England had failed to adapt to surfaces that were either bowler friendly or were too slow.
One of the biggest mistakes that England is repeating is – heavily relying on Jason Roy. The England team become hugely confident only when Roy provides solid opening start for the team. While, when Roy is absent the team looks like shaken. During the games against Australia and Sri Lanka, the target set could have been chased down easily.
But, the batsmen despite getting good starts had thrown their wickets away. Ben Stokes was the only batsman who was sensible enough to read the conditions and play accordingly. Despite Stokes’ effort, England failed to chase down easy targets of 233 and 286.