After clinching the T20I series, India will now face off against West Indies in the longer version of the game.
The first of the three One-Day Internationals is scheduled to be played on December 15 at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai.
The wicket at the Chepauk has generally favoured the batsmen more, especially during the first-half of a match. Spinners will play a big role in the middle overs.
India have shown impressive form in the game’s fifty-over format in recent times and have won nine of their last eleven completed matches.
They have played just one ODI series since their semi-final loss at the ICC Cricket World Cup in England; a three-match series in the West Indies where they won 2-0.
West Indies have not been faring too well in ODIs – they have lost eight of their last twelve completed matches in the format.
However, they outplayed Afghanistan in their most recent ODI assignment which came last month. It was a three-match series played at Lucknow, India which the Windies swept 3-0.
India’s top three – Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul and Virat Kohli, are the big guns in the batting line-up. Kohli was the leading run-getter in the preceding T20I series and he has an impressive ODI average of 76.64 against the West Indies.
The Indian selectors will have to choose between Manish Pandey and all-rounder Kedar Jadhav as one of the team’s middle-order batsmen.
It will also be interesting to see whether captain Kohli decides to play both the wrist-spinners – Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal – or pick seam-bowling all-rounder Shivam Dube in place of one of them.
KL Rahul should open the batting after stellar outings in the T20I format against Bangladesh and West Indies.
Deepak Chahar is set to share the new ball with Bhuvneshwar Kumar. The onus will be upon Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma to deliver with the bat while the spotlight will once again be on Rishabh Pant, with his place in the side being in danger.
West Indies are sweating over the fitness of their opening batsman Evin Lewis who hurt his knee while fielding in the third T20 international.
In case he fails to recover in time for this game, Brandon King will probably be made to open the batting alongside Sunil Ambris. Kieron Pollard will be leading the Windies in this ODI series.
However, the Windies still have enough batting firepower in Shai Hope, Shimron Hetmyer and skipper Kieron Pollard.
West Indies will rely heavily on Sheldon Cottrell, Jason Holder and Alzarri Joseph to get rid of India’s top-order early on in the innings.
Roston Chase and Nicholas Pooran play the floaters role depending on the situation. Pollard’s experience comes in handy as well while Sheldon Cottrell and Jason Holder handle the new ball duties. Hayden Walsh will again feature as the lead spinner.
INDIA: Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, Virat Kohli (c), Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant (wk), Kedar Jadhav, Shivam Dube, Mohammed Shami, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Deepak Chahar, Yuzvendra Chahal
WEST INDIES: Sunil Ambris, Brandon King, Shai Hope, Shimron Hetmyer, Nicholas Pooran (wk), Kieron Pollard (c), Roston Chase, Jason Holder, Sheldon Cottrell, Alzarri Joseph, Hayden Walsh
Virat Kohli vs Sheldon Cottrell
Virat Kohli is easily the premier batsman in the world, be it in any format. His ODI form has been impeccable and the burden of being the Indian captain has not at all affected his form or the team’s fortunes.
The ICC ODI Number 1 Batsman has 11520 runs from 239 matches at a superlative average of 60.31 and a brilliant strike rate of 93.21.
The fiery Jamaican pacer Sheldon Cottrell has been highly impressive in ODIs. The left-arm pacer is a wily customer and is a proven wicket-taker.
From 26 matches, the 30-year old veteran has managed to prise out 34 wickets even though the stats do not favour him much.
But the thing that sets him apart is the bounce he has managed to extract off the pitches, and that ability to surprise the batsmen with well-directed short balls has been key in his displays.
Mohammed Shami vs Shimron Hetmyer
Mohammed Shami has been the pick of the Indian bowlers in the Test series, and now he will look to recreate that form in the ODI matches as well.
With Jasprit Bumrah missing out again, Shami holds the aces even before a ball is bowled, and will unsurprisingly be the leader of India’s pace troika yet again.
Shami has 131 wickets from 70 matches at a strike rate of 27.1.
Shimron Hetmyer was easily the pick of the batsmen for the Caribbean outfit in the T20 series, and the enterprising Windies batsman is capable of upsetting India’s cause singlehandedly.
His ability to take on the bowlers, regardless of any situation, makes him an extremely dangerous proposition for the Indian bowlers.
Hetmyer has 1236 runs from 39 matches at an incredible strike rate of 105.01. He has four centuries to his name too.
India secured a thumping win by 67 runs in the third T20I to win the series 2-1 and that will give them confidence and momentum going into this opening game of the ODI series.
India’s record in home conditions is formidable. West Indies looks to identify a winning combination with Kieron Pollard at the helm. With a young and dynamic side at his disposal, Pollard will eye an upset.
But, the hosts have been in impressive form in this format and are very hard to beat in their own conditions.
The Windies do have a few batsmen in their side who can take the game away from the opposition, but if India bowl well, Virat Kohli and Co. should not have much problem in picking up a win on Sunday.
Team CricWizz predicts a win for the ‘Men in Blue.’