India grappling with familiar middle-order frailty

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As the West Indies crossed the finish line in Pune, India should have wondered where its own finalist was. Did it not oscillate between numbers 5 and 6 once? Is that now a fable of the past? A look at the scorecard will tell you that in those positions he still dwells, at least in body, but not so much in spirit. A little more than a hundred required, in a mustache below a run for a ball, and Virat Kohli on the other end, was a situation that could have been better for MS Dhoni than his own batting glove. But what happened in Pune has become a feature of India in recent times: an inability to close matches without a large contribution from two of the first three. It is not that India has suffered too many defeats since the Champions Trophy, but when they have done so, the faults have been similar.

Part of the reason why India has not had a constant average order for a while is also because they do not have I do not need one. Most of the time, as in the first ODI in Guwahati, or in Nottingham against England a few months ago, two of the top three scored substantial. The same was the case during the Asian Cup, except in the final, where India was limited to winning the last ball.

Since the 2015 World Cup, the top three in India have averaged almost 62, 16 more than the next best England. But the abyss – sometimes as a consequence, sometimes not – between the contribution of the first three and that of numbers 5, 6 and 7 is by far the widest for India among the best teams during the same period.

West Indies, on the other hand, made a pleasant discovery that really should have been evident from the start. The key to dismantling India, which is now a stronger force with the ball, is surpassing its superior order. Although his captain highlighted a score of more than 300, it is ironic, but not entirely surprising, that in the only ODI they have won so far, they did not actually achieve that mark in 17 races. However, what they accomplished was to discard three of the four best in India for less than fifty, leaving Kohli to fight in a familiarly sad battle, as he has often had to do in recent tests abroad. Ranked No. 9, the West Indies do not suddenly become favorites against India, which is number 2 in the table, but if they produce a repeat of all the things they did well in the third ODI, they could well become the only team. to beat India twice in an ODI series since October 2016.

Ashley Nurse inflates after taking a window AFP

Form Guide

West Indies WTLLW [19659009] In the reflector

The overwhelming adage that the absence of the side increases a player's worth could not have been more true in the case of Kedar Jadhav . His return from the hamstring injury he suffered in the Asian Cup final means that India does not have to knock down all of its top-class bowlers if one of them has a day off. They have been forced to do so in all three matches so far. His bowling game remains an inscrutable mystery, as he continues to keep low scoring rates and also recover crucial windows. The low trajectory with which it rolls makes it difficult to get under the ball unless it is taken completely. Some of the hitters in the West Indies, who have a predilection for aerial shots over midwicket, could be LBW candidates against their terribly slow grubbers. In his main role, with the bat, Jadhav has always played discreet cameos that have made a discernible difference to India's totals. His return is good for an erroneous order.

Shai Hope has so far played a role that one might have expected the experienced Marlon Samuels to perform. In the midst of the cacophony, when the windows fell in Pune, he ingeniously held the entrances together and took it deep enough for Ashley Nurse's cameo to influence the outcome of the game. In an alignment full of impetuous power hitters, who fit perfectly into their time, Hope's awareness has been timeless.

Team news

Ravindra Jadeja was left out to chauffeur Khaleel Ahmed, maybe in anticipation of dew. He is likely to return, not only because Khaleel received a slap of 65 in ten passes, but also because India's lower order needs are reinforced. With concerns about the physical fitness behind him and the practice of matches under his belt, Jadhav should also walk sideways, but whoever comes out for him could be a harder question to answer for India.

India (probable XI): 1 Rohit Sharma, 2 Shikhar Dhawan, 3 Virat Kohli (capt), 4 Ambati Rayudu, 5 Rishabh Pant / Kedar Jadhav, 6 MS Dhoni (week), 7 Ravindra Jadeja, 8 Bhuvneshwar Kumar, 9 Yuzvendra Chahal, 10 Kuldeep Yadav, 11 Jasprit Bumrah

Unless there are injuries, the West Indies have little reason to change an alignment that has been progressing better through the ODI series. In all likelihood, they will deploy the same side that leveled the series in Pune.

West Indies (probable XI): 1 Chandrapaul Hemraj, 2 Kieran Powell, 3 Shai Hope (wk), 4 Shimron Hetmeyer, 5 Marlon Samuels, 6 Rovman Powell, 7 Jason Holder (capt), 8 Fabian AllenAshley Nurse, 9 Obed McCoy, 11 Kemar Roach

Tone and conditions

Administrative problems forced to change the fourth ODI From Wankhede to Brabourne Stadium. Apart from the pin code, it is difficult to say what else could be in common between places. While the last two first class matches here had a reasonably high score, the last one was a tour match between India A and Australia that took place in February 2017. The last international match at the venue was a test match between India and Sri Lanka. in 2009, where Virender Sehwag reached seven races of what could have been his third triple rye.

Statistics and trivia

  • The victory of the West Indies in Pune was only his fifth against India in India since January 2007

  • Kuldeep Yadav is the best Indian candidate in ODis in 2018. He has 41 of 17 matches, with an average of 18. Nine more hits and will knock Rashid Khan off the No. 1


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