West Indies captain Kieron Pollard called it correctly at the coin toss and opted to field first in the first ODI against India at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai on Sunday.
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On a dry pitch, Pollard gave his bowlers the first chance to make use of the surface as he he felt the surface is unknown and wanted to see how it behaves. “This pitch is bit of an unknown so we will see how it behaves. We are gonna back our decision. We are looking forward to this challenge,” Pollard said at the toss.
On the other hand, India captain Virat Kohli was surprised by his West Indies counterpart’s decision to put them in to bat first as they were anyway looking to do that. “Very happy to bat first. It looks like a dry track as the spikes are going in so the surface is not hard. And we would have batted first anyway. A decent total on the board would put us in a strong position. In 50 overs, it’s not easy to hit throughout the game, strike rotation is important and that’s where our bowling attack becomes lethal,” he said.
India edged past West Indies in the preceding three-match T20I series 2-1 and Kohli won’t take them lightly despite the yawning gap between the two sides in ODI rankings.
“West Indies are a dangerous side and we can’t take them lightly,” he said.
Shivam Dube, who has impressed in T20Is, has been given an ODI debut while Yuzvendra Chahal misses out.
For West Indies, opener Evin Lewis misses out as he has been given more time to recover fully from an injury he picked in the third T20I.
India: KL Rahul, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli (captain), Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant (wk), Kedar Jadhav, Shivam Dube, Ravindra Jadeja, Deepak Chahar, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Shami
West Indies: Shai Hope (wk), Sunil Ambris, Shimron Hetmyer, Nicholas Pooran, Roston Chase, Kieron Pollard (captain), Jason Holder, Keemo Paul, Hayden Walsh, Alzarri Joseph, Sheldon Cottrell