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Preview: Ojha's injury increases Team India's woes

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Updated: Friday, July 27, 2012, 12:29 [IST]
 
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India aim for a fresh start at Colombo

Colombo, Jul 27: After a disastrous outing at Hambantota, Team India heads to Colombo to try their luck as aim for a win to take a 2-1 lead while they play Sri Lanka in the third ODI of the five-match series on Saturday.

India's three month break from international cricket slowly had an effect on the Indian cricket team as the top order failed yet again when there was a need to perform.

Virat Kohli, who has excelled in all forms of the game throughout the season, failed for the first time, while the rest of the players did not attempt to stay on for a while as they lost wickets at quick succession to give away an easy nine-wicket win to the hosts.

The only plus point has been Gautam Gambhir's gritty knock, talking about the second ODI. Apart from Gambhir another player who has been in news recently is the over-rated middle-order batsman from Mumbai, Rohit Sharma who might get the axe sooner than later.

The current form has put skipper MS Dhoni is a dilemma, as he has to pick either Manoj Tiwary or Rohit Sharma for the No 4 slot.

Bowling also is a concern for Team India following Pragyan Ojha's injury, as he needs time to recover from the neck injury. Though he has time to recover there are speculations on his availability for the third ODI on Saturday. If he is not available, then the team management will have to pick either Rahul Sharma or Ashok Dinda for the third ODI.

Rahul Sharma, who was tested positive for consumption of drugs at a rave party in Mumbai in the month of May, has not been a part of the playing XI since India's tour Down Under, and will be interesting if Dhoni prefers to play him in the series against Sri Lanka following Pragyan Ojha's injury and if there is a need to replace Ojha in the playing XI.

With Umesh Yadav also leaking runs, it would be nice to see Dinda sharing the new ball with Zaheer Khan. But it all depends on MS Dhoni and team management.

Sri Lanka on the other hand, would like to keep the momentum going as they are fresh from a nine-wicket win against the World Champions, dismissing them to a paltry 138.

With Sangakkara, Tharanga, doing the job for Lanka, bowlers Thisara Perera and Angelo Mathews have been successful against India in the on-going series as they have claimed 6 and 4 wickets respectively.

Its time for Dhoni to decide whether he wants to go with Rohit Sharma or pick Manoj Tiwary while another concern would be to pick Dinda or Rahul Sharma for another bowler's slot following Pragyan Ojha's neck injury.

Squad:

India: MS Dhoni (captain), Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Virat Kohli (vice-captain), Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina, Irfan Pathan, Ravichandran Ashwin, Zaheer Khan, Umesh Yadav, Ajinkya Rahane, Manoj Tiwary, Rahul Sharma, Ashok Dinda, Pragyan Ojha

Sri Lanka: Mahela Jayawardene (captain), Angelo Mathews (vice-captain), Tillakaratne Dilshan, Kumar Sangakkara, Upul Tharanga, Dinesh Chandimal, Thisara Perera, Lahiru Thirimanne, Lasith Malinga, Chamara Kapugedera, Rangana Herath, Sachithra Senanayake, Jeevan Mendis, Isuru Udana, Nuwan Pradeep.

Match starts at 2.30PM IST. Catch all live updates, ball by ball commentary here on www.thatscricket.com

ThatsCricket

Story first published:  Friday, July 27, 2012, 12:22 [IST]
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