First ODI today: India firm favourites, WI keen to carry forward T20 momentum

Last Updated: Sunday, 15 December 2019 (12:51 IST)
Chennai: Eyeing for a 10th straight bilateral series win against the West Indies, a buoyant India, fresh from its 2-1 win in the shortest format, would continue to maintain the momentum when the two teams come face to face in the first ODI at the M A Chidambaram here on Sunday.

(Photo:Twitter/ICC)
However, rain threat looms large over the contest as the city has been experiencing heavy rains for the last two days due to the presence of upper air circulation.
 
Though West Indies managed to win one of the three matches in the T20s last week, India clearly start as firm favourites, despite the visitors very keen to carry forward the momentum they gained in the T20s.
 
On the eve of the match, India suffered a setback when swing bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar was ruled out to a groin injury and the selectors have named Chennai Super King player Shardul Thakur as his replacement.
 
The momentum was clearly with the home with skipper in sublime form along with opener K L Rahul as was seen in the high scoring contest at Mumbai, which helped them seal the T20series.
 
In the absence of southpaw Shikar Dhawan, who was ruled out due to an injury, Rohit Sharma would open with Rahul, followed by Kohli, Shreyas Iyer at the crucial number four slot, Shivam Dube and underfire Rishab Pant.
 
It needs to be seen whether Kedhar Jadhav, who also bowls off spin, get a chance or in form Mayank Agarwal, who scored heavily in the domestic matches and replaced Shikar Dhawan, was also in contention along with Manish Pandey.
 
Mohammed Shami and Deepak Chahar was expected to share the newball and it would be a toss up between Yuzvendra Chahal, wrist spinner Kuldeep Yadav and Ravindra Jadeja among the spinners.
 
With the Chepauk wicket expected to assist the spinners, Kohli might be tempted to go with three spinners.
 
West Indies, on the other hand, were happy about the T20 show and was keen to carry it forward in the ODIs.
 
As Assistant coach Roddy Estwick put it, he was happy with the T20 show and would continue to carry forward it in the ODIs.
 
He also spoke about their batsmen rotating the strike, a strategy well done during the series against Afghanistan.
 
The Carribeans have good talent in the form of Shimron Hetmyer, Nicholas Pooran, the aggressive Shari Hope and skipper Kieron Pollard, who is known well for his big hitting prowess and all rounder Romario Shepherd.
 
There was an injury cloud over Evin Lewis and the team management is hopeful that he would be fit when the two skippers walk out in the middle for the toss.
 
Sheldon Cottrell will spearhead the bowling along with former skipper JasonHolder, while the spin deparment would be headed by leg spinner Hayden Walsh Jr, Kharry Pierre and Roston Chase.
 
The teams (from):
 
India: Virat Kohli (C), Rohit Sharma (VC), Mayank Agarwal, K L Rahul, Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Rishabh Pant (WK), Shivam Dube, Kedar Jadhav, Ravindra Jadeja, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Deepak Chahar, Mohammed Shami, Shardul Thakur.
 
 
West Indies: (C), Sunil Ambris, Shai Hope, Khary Pierre, Roston Chase, Alzarri Joseph, Sheldon Cottrell, Brandon King, Nicholas Pooran, Shimron Hetmyer, Evin Lewis, Romario Shepherd, Jason Holder, Keemo Paul, Hayden Walsh Jr. (UNI)