India Vs West Indies ODI-Series - What'is This Really? > Cricket News, cricinfo, mobilecric, cricbuzz, livescore and more

Cricket news - India vs West Indies ODI series - what's at stake really?

West Indies will hope to build from the T20I series and challenge India further.

West Indies will hope to build from the T20I series and challenge India further.

Context has become a key facet in international cricket in recent years with all three formats vying for an equal share of attention. Test Cricket certainly received a boost in that regard with the introduction of day-night cricket and the World Test Championship. And then you have a T20 WC scheduled to be held in another 10 months time with another following suit a year after the Australian edition. That brings the spotlight back on the 50-over format that feels left out during the non World Cup years.

An ODI league has been announced but it isn't getting underway for another six months. So what do India and West Indies play for now at a time where teams have already started preparing for the T20 WC in Australia next year and at a time where there is a visible amount of excitement surrounding the Test Championship? The fact that India only had an optional practice session 24 hours before the game tells you something. A washout or a game with regular rain interventions might not help matters as well. The pitch was under the covers for a major duration in the last 48 hours and even though the forecast for Sunday gives hope, one can never take the weather for granted in this part of the world in December.

On a personal front, this could well turn out to be a contextual series for a few players in that Indian squad. KL Rahul appears to be rejuvenated and Shikhar Dhawan's absence will give him an opportunity to present the selectors a huge headache by the time India play their next 50-over series. Rishabh Pant will look to shut his critics once and for all and Kedar Jadhav be keen to come up with a match-winning performance. The 34-year-old is in the mix only in the ODI format and one bad series might fetch him the boot.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar's injury gives a chance for Deepak Chahar to rubberstamp his white-ball credentials and it will be interesting to see what India do with Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav. Will Chennai's slow nature prompt Virat Kohli to play them both? And if that does happen, West Indies will have their task cut out. Despite not being anywhere closer to being favourites for the series, West Indies will be high on confidence especially the series win over Afghanistan that saw them handle spin with success.

They have an exciting bunch of young batsmen in their ranks but like their assistant coach pointed out two days ahead of the series, the likes of Shimron Hetmyer, Shai Hope and Nicholas Pooran will have to take a cue from the likes of Kohli and Rohit Sharma in order to raise their game. And if the West Indies bowling attack can manage to keep those two big guns quiet on the day, that Indian middle order will be tested.

When: December 15, 2019; 1:30 PM IST

Where: MA Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai

What to expect: The pitch has been relaid recently but is still expected to be on the slower side. Question marks remain over the weather with the city witnessing brief spells of rain over the last 48 hours. The forecast is clear for Sunday though.

Team News

India

India have drafted in Mayank Agarwal to replace Dhawan in the squad but Rahul is expected to open the innings alongside Rohit. Shardul Thakur has made a late entry to replace the injured Bhuvneshwar but don't be surprised if India opt to play just two specialist pacers on the slowish Chepauk surface.

Probable XI: Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, Virat Kohli (C), Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant (WK), Kedar Jadhav, Ravindra Jadeja, Deepak Chahar, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Mohammed Shami

West Indies

West Indies will take a late call on Evin Lewis after he injured himself in the final T20I. If he does miss out, Brandon King might take his spot in the XI. The visitors are not expected to tinker a lot with the combination that helped them beat Afghanistan recently.

Probable XI: Evin Lewis/Brandon King, Shai Hope, Shimron Hetmyer, Roston Chase, Nicholas Pooran (WK), Kieron Pollard (C), Jason Holder, Sheldon Cottrell, Romario Shepherd, Hayden Walsh, Alzarri Joseph

What they said:

"The reason why we keep discussing him is that he has got an immense ability. Everybody believes he can be an x-factor. All of us believe he is a good player who can come good. He is working hard on his game fitness. Hoping he comes good." - India's batting coach Vikram Rathour on Rishabh Pant's form.

"He has been very valuable for us. We saw his talents and we're trying to exploit what we can give for himself as he can be up there in terms of being the No.1 allrounder in the world." - West Indies skipper Kieron Pollard on Roston Chase's presence in the ODI side.

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