Virat likely to miss 1st match due to groin injury as full-strength England await
For all the controversy and questions surrounding his place in the side after an extended poor run, Virat Kohli is reportedly likely to miss the first ODI against England at The Oval in London on Tuesday night due to a groin strain he suffered during the third T20I at Trent Bridge.
"Virat has a groin strain during the last game. It can't be confirmed whether it happened during fielding or while batting. He will probably miss the first ODI tomorrow at Oval as the groin needs rest," a BCCI source told PTI. A reliable source, though, confirmed to TOI that Kohli had travelled with the team bus from Nottingham to London.
If the former India captain misses out on the opening ODI of the series, it could be another blow for him in his bid to recover his form, which has been wretched for a long while now. The 33-year-old will then have the remaining two ODIs at Lord's (July 14) and Manchester (July 17) to make his case for his white-ball future. Over the years, One-day cricket is the format where the Delhi man has truly ruled the cricketing universe-having slammed 43 centuries and 64 fifties, while scoring 12,311 email@example.com in 260 games.
Meanwhile, a few members of India's squad for the ODI series-opener Shikhar Dhawan, pacers Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj and Shardul Thakur, and 'keeper-bat Ishan Kishan - trained at The Oval on Monday. Displaying a refreshing aggression with the bat throughout the series, India were 2-1 winners in the T20Is. It would be interesting to see if India continue with their all-out attack strategy, which worked brilliantly for them in the T20I series, in the ODIs too.
Squad for Windies T20Is today
Meanwhile, India's squad for the five-match T20I series in the West Indies will be announced on Tuesday, revealed a source. Dhawan will lead the side in the ODI series in the Caribbean a clear indication that the experienced left-hander will be a part of the side for the 2023 World Cup in India. Rested from the ODI part of the tour, it will be interesting to see if Kohli is given a 'break' from the T20Is in the West Indies -supposed to be held from July 29 to August 7 too.
Will 'Sky' magic, Pandya inspire India?
Even though they lost the final T20I by 17 runs, Suryakumar Yadav's mesmerizing 55-ball 117, which almost took India on the brink of an improbable victory, should give India huge belief that they can clinch the ODI series against the hosts too. The 31-year-old's unique ability to smash bowlers to all corners of the ground in 360 degree style-gives India a huge edge in the middle overs.
Besides witnessing a reunion of the old firm of skipper Rohit Sharma and Dhawan at the top, the series will see India bolstered by the ODI return of allrounder Hardik Pandya, who's enjoyed a fairy-tale run in the last few months.
Leading the Gujarat Titans to the IPL 2022 title and then pulling off match-winning performances for India with bat and ball-as was the case in the second T20I at Southampton, where he smashed a 33-ball 51 & then took 4-33.
Apart from the Kohli factor, another worry for India is the bowling form of Ravindra Jadeja. The Saurashtra man is now looking more like a batting allrounder than a frontline bowler. In the third T20I, with Dawid Malan going after him, the left-arm spinner went wicketless while conceding 45 in his four overs.
India would also hope that Siraj and Thakur would have recovered their confidence after the hammering they received at the hands of Joe Root and Jonny Bairstow as England hunted down 378 in the final innings of the fifth Test on a canter. Siraj was thrashed for 90 in 15 overs, while Thakur went for 65 in 11, as both returned wicketless in the fourth innings at Birmingham. India might want to try out left-arm seamer Arshdeep Singh, who made an impressive T20I debut at Southampton, taking 2-18 on debut.
The pace department gets muscle with the inclusion of Jasprit Bumrah, Shami and Prasidh Krishna for this series. When India last played an ODI series, against the West Indies at Ahmedabad in February-Krishna's superb performances-he took 2-29, 4-12 & 3-27-played a huge role in the hosts recording a 3-0 clean sweep.
This will be the first ODI series for new England captain Jos Buttler, who took over as white-ball skipper from Eoin Morgan just before India arrived for this tour. It's early days yet, but it does seem that the weight captaincy might just be affecting Buttler's explosive batting-his scores in the T20I series were 0, 4 & 18. Hurting after the T20I series defeat, England, with their big guns Test captain Ben Stokes, Root and Bairstow back in their pack, will be itching to bounce back in the ODIs.
India would be relieved that Malan, who tonked a match-winning 77 off 39 balls in the last T20I, isn't there in England's ODI squad, though his partner-in-crime in that game, the big-hitting Liam Livingstone, is there.