Boosted by the return of white ball specialists Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar, India will aim to bounce back from the heart-stopping draw that denied them a 2-0 lead when they face a resurgent West Indies in the third One-day International (ODI) in Pune on Saturday.
After an easy 8-wicket sailing in the series opener in Guwahati, India were denied an easy 2-0 lead in the five-match rubber as the tourists managed to salvage a morale-boosting tie in the second ODI at Visakhapatnam.
But the return of Bhuvneshwar and Bumrah will definitely add a lot of meat to the Indian bowling that has been clobbered for more than 320 runs on both occasions.
It will also be interesting to see whether skipper Virat Kohli and the team management would still want to pursue with Umesh Yadav, especially after the pacer successively failed to convert his success in Tests to limited overs cricket.
With just 16 ODIs to go for the ICC 2019 World Cup in England and Wales, India will also be hoping to get their middle order conundrum solved, especially the No.5, 6 and 7 spots.
While Ambati Rayudu justified his skipper’s backing for the No.4 slot with a fluent 73 in the second match, former skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who was promoted to No.5 failed to score briskly and just looked a shadow of his former self.
Rookie keeper-bat Rishabh Pant also failed to play the long handle at No.6 while Ravindra Jadeja also departed cheaply.
Moreover, with the dew making life difficult for the spinners, batting first will be a challenge for Kohli as both his wrist spinners Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav find it tough to grip the ball.
Moreover, left-arm spinner Jadeja will need to step up his white ball form if he has to make the cut for the World Cup squad.
On the other hand, the visitors will once again bank on the likes of the in-form duo of Shimron Hetmyer and Shai Hope to score the bulk of the runs, with the others — Kieron Powell, Chanderpaul Hemraj and Rovman Powell — playing the supporting role.
The West Indians will also be hoping for veteran Marlon Samuels to pull up his socks and strengthen the fragile middle order.
Skipper Jason Holder has had a decent series so far, contributing with both the bat and ball, but the tourists will mainly be concerned with the performance of their frontline pacers in Kemar Roach and Oshane Thomas, who have been milked at will by the Indian top order.
The West Indian spin duo of Devendra Bishoo and Ashley Nurse have a lot to work on in the middle overs if they fancy any chances of levelling the series on Saturday. (IANS Inputs)
When is India vs West Indies 3rd ODI?
India vs West Indies 3rd ODI will take place on Saturday, October 27, 2018.
Where is India vs West Indies 3rd ODI?
India vs West Indies 3rd ODI will be played at Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, Pune.
What time does India vs West Indies 3rd ODI begin?
India vs West Indies 3rd ODI match begins at 1:30 PM IST. and the toss will take place at 1:00 PM IST.
Where can I live stream India vs West Indies 3rd ODI match for free?
Hotstar and Jio app.
Which channel will broadcast India vs West Indies 3rd ODI?
The 1st ODI between India and West Indies will be broadcasted on Star Sports 1 and Star Sports 1 Hindi. It will be available on the channel’s HD platforms also.