Team India lock horns against West Indies in 3rd & decider ODI at Cuttack on Sunday

Last Modified Sunday, 22 December 2019 (11:55 IST)
Cuttack: With the series squared at 1-1, Team will  take on Windies in the decider at Barabati Stadium here on Sunday.India bounced back in Visakhapatnam in the second ODI with a thumping 107-run win to level the series 1-1 against the West Indies.
West Indies in 2nd T20I today" width="740" />
Indian batting has been a stronger suit, with Shreyas Iyer and Rishabh Pant showing their mettle in the inexperienced middle order.The bowlers, however, have failed to make early breakthrough and poor catching has been a matter of concern for skipper Kohli.
   
With Cuttack expected to be another batting-friendly surface, India are likely to persist with five genuine bowling options in their playing XI.
   
KL Rahul and continued their fine run as an ODI pair in 2019, adding 227 in 37 overs to lay a solid platform. Kohli departed for a rare duck but late fireworks from Rishabh Pant and Shreyas Iyer, that included a 31-run over from Roston Chase, powered India to 387/7.
 
For West Indies, after the series levelled at 1-1, they have a great chance to win an ODI series against India, a feat they haven't achieved for more than 13 years.West Indies' last bilateral ODI series win against the Men in Blue dates back to May 2006, when they triumphed 4-1 in a five-match affair at home. 
 
In a bid to break that streak, West Indies secured a convincing eight-wicket win in the first ODI this series, but they went down in the second game due to indisciplined bowling and a lack of intensity in the field.
 
While the batting has shown marked improvement, largely revolving around the stabilising effect of Shai Hope, skipper will be well aware that one aspect alone will not be enough to trump the team ranked second in the MRF Tyres ICC Men's ODI Team Rankings. 
   
The West Indies batsmen, aided by some sloppy catching, found themselves on course till the 29th over, with Nicholas Pooran unleashing stroke after stroke in company of Shai Hope.
   
Mohammed Shami however, dented the progress, removing Pooran and Pollard off consecutive balls to trigger a collapse. Kuldeep Yadav joined the act and bagged his second ODI hat-trick as the visitors were eventually bundled out for 280 in the 44th over to give India a series-levelling 107-run win.
 
Team India captain said, "It is always good to see the team getting 40-50 extra than what you would've thought at the start of the game. I think it all boils down to the good foundation. Catching has been disappointing. It is not the representation of the kind of standards that we set. It's very important to maintain standards and live upto it. We are one of the best fielding sides in the world."
 
West Indies captain Kieron Pollard said, "There are some youngsters and there are some talented ones, I have spoken about them again and again. Nothing happens overnight, it's about putting the pieces of puzzle together, it's work in progress. We deserve to go out with a bang, our heads and shoulders are still high. We'll come back and fight hard."
 
Meanwhile, India and West Indies cricket teams arrived here on Thursday and were taken to a hotel which was fortified with security officials.  With the arrival of the players, the cricket lovers are excited to cheer the men in blue after two and a half years,
 
As many as 8,150 tickets have been sold online, while all the 10,150 tickets sold over the counter have been sold out. All the counters were under CCTV surveillance and no individual was allowed to buy two tickets, an Odisha Cricket Association (OCA) official said.
   
While players from both teams will stay in Bhubaneswar, the State police has made elaborate security arrangements in the twin cities of Bhubaneswar and Cuttack.
   
At least 63 platoons (one platoon comprises 30 personnel) of the police force and a Rapid Action Force contingent comprising 300 officers have been deployed to maintain law and order, a senior police official today said.While the host team took on the field for practice this morning, the visitors will make it later in the day.(UNI)