India vs West Indies, 3rd ODI: Preview

Published: Saturday, June 11, 2011, 10:03 [IST]
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India vs West Indies, 3rd ODI: Preview

St. John's, Jun 11: Even after the first two losses against India, the West Indies bowlers will be heaving a sigh of relief that they did not have to bowl at the likes of Sachin Tendulkar, Virendra Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir. The Indian youngster's particularly Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli have been so impressive that one wonders is the West Indian bowling lacklustre or is that the Indian youngsters are too talented for them.

As yet another series defeat looms large over the Caribbean side, one is still befuddled as to why the West Indies cricket board is not getting Chris Gayle back into the side. Whatever the reason may be, Indian bowlers aren't complaining. They have bowled really well, to tie up the West Indian batsmen and restrict them to reasonable scores.

If Indian batting has been spectacular, the bowling too looks in capable hands as Amit Mishra, Munaf Patel and Praveen Kumar have impressed with their disciplined performance. Harbhajan Singh and Yousuf Pathan, too have performed reasonably well, but one expected them to be much better against this West Indian batting line-up. But there is not to complain either.

West Indies' batting has clearly looked lacking inspiration and the selector's decision to rest Dwayne Bravo is equally baffling as their choice of not inducting Chris Gayle in the side. Lendl Simmons batted with contemptuous ease in the last game and the way Ramnaresh Sarwan is grinding his way in the middle suggests that he might soon be finding his touch.

The Caribbean side's bowling has been another weak point for the team and one wonder's where have all the fearsome fast bowler's gone. Bishoo, after impressing against Pakistan, must now be going through a reality check against the Indian batsmen, who are the best players of spin bowling. Ravi Rampaul has impressed in patches, but nevertheless still appears a work in progress and should do well in the future.

West Indies' cup of woes is spilling over but there is one thing that they should take from and it is their skipper, Darren Sammy. Never the most talented of players, he in a way resembles the grit of Rahul Dravid, who knew his limitations and worked hard to improve them.

Sammy, is no Dravid in batting neither is he a bowler to be feared but as a sportsman, the most important thing is effort and that he does in abundance. While his place in the side may evoke a bit of a question, but given the way West Indies have slipped downhills, he certainly appears to be the right man to inspire the team and lead them out of the rut.

As has been the trend so far, in this series India are heads and shoulder's above the West Indies and are the favourites to win the match as well as the series here. West Indies appear to be without a chance to upset the Indian apple-cart unless of course India play significantly below par or Sammy's grit and effort rubs on to his team-mates and inspires them to play out of their skin and fight till the finish.

Teams (likely):

West Indies: Lendl Simmons, Kirk Edwards, Darren Bravo, Ramnaresh Sarwan, Marlon Samuels, Kieron Pollard, Andre Russell/Anthony Martin, Darren Sammy (capt), Carlton Baugh (wk), Kemar Roach, Devendra Bishoo

India : Parthiv Patel (wk), Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli, S Badrinath, Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina (capt), Yusuf Pathan, Harbhajan Singh, Amit Mishra, Praveen Kumar, Munaf Patel

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