Deadline: August 4, 8 PM IST
Venue: Central Broward Regional Park Stadium Turf Ground, Lauderhill, Florida
The pitch is as dry and hard as you get in the subcontinent. However, the batsmen struggled to time the ball to perfection. There are rough patches spread out on the pitch that cut down the pace of the ball, catching the batsmen in two minds.
Although only 5 of the 15 wickets belonged to the spinners, they have more advantages. The pitch has both zip and turn.
As far as the fast bowlers are concerned, they will try to mix up the pace and trap the batsman off guard. Bhuvneshwar Kumar outfoxed Evin Lewis with a knuckleball, while Khaleel Ahmed and Sheldon Cottrell deceived the batsmen with off-cutters.
Batsmen from both teams played uncharacteristic strokes. The culprits especially are John Campbell and Rishabh Pant who tried to slog an off-spinner as soon as they took the crease, walking back for a duck. While West Indies could never recover after the early fall of wickets, India made a heavy meal out of a light chase, losing 6 wickets in the process.
To put things into perspective, both teams will bat with caution and then take on the bowlers once a solid foundation is laid.
Both teams are unlikely to make changes in their playing XIs after one match. India especially won’t tinker with their winning combination, as one more win will seal the series for them.
Probable XI for West Indies: John Campbell, Evin Lewis, Nicholas Pooran (wk), Shimron Hetmyer, Kieron Pollard, Rovman Powell, Carlos Brathwaite (c), Sunil Narine, Keemo Paul, Sheldon Cottrell, Oshane Thomas
Probable XI for India: Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli (c), Manish Pandey, Rishabh Pant (wk), Krunal Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Washington Sundar, Navdeep Saini, K Khaleel Ahmed
NOTE: Pick your fantasy cricket team wisely.
Players to watch out for
Kieron Pollard took the crease when West Indies were stuttering at 8 for 2. At the other end was the in-form Nicholas Pooran who followed an attractive four with a six downtown. It seemed, at that stage, that the duo will rescue West Indies, but Pooran mistimed a pull. Two more wickets fell soon and West Indies lost half their side for 33 runs in 6 overs, with Pollard stranded at the other end. He made sure he keeps most of the strike. Eventually, he scored 49 of West Indies’ 95 runs.
For India, the star of the match was the debutant Navdeep Saini. He dismissed Nicholas Pooran and Shimron Hetmyer off consecutive deliveries and got the better of the rampant Kieron Pollard in the death. For his stunning figures of 3 for 17, he was awarded Player of the Match.
Sheldon Cottrell was at his usual best. He trapped Shikhar Dhawan lbw, drawing first blood. And when India were cruising to the target, Carlos Brathwaite unleashed Cottrell for his second spell. The outcome was the wicket of Virat Kohli.
Sunil Narine has now dismissed Rohit Sharma as many as 8 times. West Indies might as well open the bowling with the spin wizard.
Rohit Sharma needs to send the ball over the boundary line twice to dethrone Chris Gayle as the player with most sixes in T20Is.