Sun, 16 Jun 2019

West Indies LWWLD

In the spotlight

Ajinkya Rahane went to South Africa late last year without a big score against Sri Lanka at home. The result was his missing the first two Tests as the team management went on current form. Now home conditions are not his favourite, but he needs to score a big one in this Test to carry some current form, and more importantly confidence, to Australia.

Without their talisman, their captain, Jason Holder, West Indies were half the team they usually are. There was nobody to peg away outside off for fours when India were getting easy runs. There was nobody to pitch a tent when the India bowlers were running through the wickets. A fit Holder should mean a more competitive West Indies.

Team news

India have named an unchanged twelve, which means there is a good chance Virat Kohli might field an unchanged XI only for the second time in 42 Tests as captain. That also means Mayank Agarwal will not get a go as a Test opener before the Australia tour.

India: 1 KL Rahul, 2 Prithvi Shaw, 3 Cheteshwar Pujara, 4 Virat Kohli (capt.), 5 Ajinkya Rahane, 6 Rishabh Pant (wk), 7 R Ashwin, 8 Ravindra Jadeja, 9 Umesh Yadav, 10 Mohammed Shami, 11 Kuldeep Yadav/Shardul Thakur

West Indies will hope the return of Holder and Kemar Roach revitalises them. Sunil Ambris will be under pressure to retain his place after two disappointing dismissals, but they are not carrying any back-up except wicketkeeper-batsman Jahmar Hamilton. Devendra Bishoo failed to create any pressure as a spinner in Rajkot, and there might be temptation to replace him with the more accurate fingerspin of Jomel Warrican.

West Indies (possible): 1 Kraigg Brathwaite, 2 Kieran Powell, 3 Shai Hope, 4 Sunil Ambris, 5 Shimron Hetmeyer, 6 Roston Chase, 7 Shane Dowrich (wk), 8 Jason Holder (capt), 9 Kemar Roach, 10 Devendra Bishoo/Jomel Warrican, 11 Shannon Gabriel

Pitch and conditions

Expect Rajkot-like conditions in Hyderabad: good for batting to begin with, and turn and uneven bounce from third day onwards. There will be some respite from the 40-degrees heat of Rajkot, with highs of mid-30s expected during the match.

Stats and triviaQuotes

"They are going to try and come harder at us because it's only a two-match series. They don't have any other options apart from trying to make a comeback. We are aware that they will come hard at us. We simply have to be at the top of our game and, if there is a difficult situation, we just have to play sensible cricket."

India captain Virat Kohli wants uncomplicated efficiency from his team

"We're playing the No. 1 team, India, in their backyard. And history would show we haven't won a Test match here since 1994, and if you look at the players who came through West Indies cricket - I think Brian Lara and these greats had been playing at that time."

West Indies captain Jason Holder knows the enormity of the task facing them

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