Oval: After the completion of the longest and the shortest formats of the game, now both sides are gearing up for the one-day series to commence at the Oval today.
Both teams shared the honour. England’s emphatic run chase of 378 in the fifth Test in the rescheduled series, then the boys in blue came back strongly and turned the table in the T20I, sealing the series 2-1.
The focus has now shifted to the ODI. World Champion England has the home advantage and is better aware of the pitch’s behaviour. But young Indian cricketers are ready to provide a stiff challenge and are eyeing series victory.
Former India captain Virat Kohli has been unable to break free from a prolonged slump. He is expected to miss today’s match due to a groin injury he suffered during the last T20I at Trent Bridge. It would be a blow for him in his bid to regain his old magical touch.
However, several members of the ODI squad, including Shikhar Dhawan, pacers Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj and Shardul Thakur, and keeper-bat Ishan Kishan, sweated at The Oval on Monday to prepare for today’s day-night fixture.
Displaying aggressive batting in the T20 series, India is ready to adopt an all-out attack strategy in ODI’s as well, which worked superbly for them in the T20 series.
Since winning the 2019 World Cup, Stokes, the player of the match in the World Cup, has played six ODI’s and Root, the leading run scorer in the tournament, has participated in nine ODI’s. Both have a chance to prove their worth and settle down in the 50-over format again.
On paper, India looks well prepared and ready to provide a stiff challenge to the hosts. Fans are expecting some fabulous batting from skipper Rohit Sharma and others. At the outset, the visitors are favourites, but uncertainty in cricket is undeniable.
Be ready for today’s thrilling encounter at the Oval.