India vs England, 2nd ODI
India vs England, 2nd ODI

Deadline: March 26, 1:30 PM IST

Venue: Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, Pune

Teams usually take a safer route when they require less than 7 RPO. England don’t do that, and Eoin Morgan said they won’t do it. They will keep playing the attacking brand of cricket, even if they throw wickets playing aerial shots. England squandered big time in the first ODI, derailing from 135 for 0 in 14.2 overs to 251 all-out in 42.1 overs.

India, on the other hand, have no worries whatsoever in the batting department, which in fact was heavily criticised for never having a dedicated No. 4 batsman until 2019. Shreyas Iyer, their now proven performer for the position, has been ruled out due to a shoulder injury, and India aren’t in a spot of bother yet. They might hand over the job to Suryakumar Yadav who blasted 57 and 32 in the T20I series at a strike rate of 185.1. These innings gave England the taste of their own medicine, and they wouldn’t want it again. One more defeat and they will lose the ODI series as well. To make matters worse for them, Suryakumar hammered 332 runs at a strike rate of 151.59 in a mere 5 matches of the recently concluded Vijay Hazare Trophy. He has runs in 50-overs games as well.

Jason Roy and Jonny Bairstow now have 12 century partnerships in 42 ODIs. Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan, India’s second-most successful opening pair in ODIs, have 16 in 108 games. What the English openers did in the first game wasn’t a surprise. They have been laying such foundations for half a decade now—the reason England are the world champions. What special about them is the fact that neither of them plays a supporting role, putting the opposition in further trouble. Not Bhuvneshwar Kumar though. Counterattacks don’t drop his shoulders. On a day the bowlers were having a tough time, he managed to maintain a strike of under 3.5. He had done the same in the last T20I, finishing with figures of 4-0-15-2.

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Shikhar Dhawan might not be in the reckoning for T20Is, but he is an ODI legend. He averages 45.4, which is better than Sourav Ganguly and Virender Sehwag, and his performances in ICC Tournaments aren’t any news. He has scored 4 fifties and a hundred in his 10 innings.

Setting a record for the fastest fifty (in 26 balls) on ODI debut isn’t something we see every day. Krunal Pandya looking at the sky and paying a tribute to his father is what makes cricket more and more romantic. His performances in the Vijay Hazare Trophy were spectacular. He will be the player to watch out for in fantasy cricket.

All KL Rahul needed was some time in the middle to regain his lost mojo. The top order had already built the stage for him capitalise on. The result was a well-crafted innings of 62* off 43 balls.

Shardul Thakur has become a man of crisis for India. His economy tells us otherwise, but he has a knack for taking wickets when it matters the most and he only dismisses the big guns. He has taken three consecutive three-wicket hauls.

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Pitch Report

The pitch has good bounce and carry. The English bowlers weren’t disciplined and paid the price, while the Indians persisted bowling close to the stumps and it worked out fine for them. Prasidh Krishna especially stuck to the Test match lines and lengths, which the England captain stressed on in the post-match conference. Otherwise, it is a paradise for the batsmen.

Fantasy Team

We have opted for a fantasy cricket team based on recent performances, impact, and credit points.

Probable XI for India: Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli (c), Suryakumar Yadav, KL Rahul (c), Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Shardul Thakur, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Yuzvendra Chahal/Kuldeep Yadav, Prasidh Krishna

Probable XI for England: Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow, Ben Stokes, Eoin Morgan (c), Jos Butler (wk), Sam Billings, Moeen Ali, Sam Curran, Tom Curran/Reece Topley, Adil Rashid, Mark Wood


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