ODI Series Preview: A Lot To Look Forward To

Posted: September 3, 2011 by The CouchExpert in Cricket, India in England 2011
Tags: , , , , , ,

 Goutham Chakravarthi

 3 September 2011


It is a slightly bizarre moment in the tour for both India and England. England have looked utterly dominant thus far and there is little that Indian have done to get the spirits up of any of their fans for the ODIs. But a lot is at stake – that England finally want to showcase that they give One Day cricket its due and India are serious enough to impose themselves in a format they really thrive in. India even went to the extent of trying out their ODI combination in the Old Trafford T20 game.

It will be interesting to see how India approach their batting poweplay

Both sides have issues to address. England’s batting order is always a concern with Cook and Trott in the top 3 and Bell at 5. While Trott has been the backbone of this side with consistent performances in the ODIs in Australia, world cup and earlier in the summer in England, Bell’s position is suspect at 5. In an ideal world, Bell would bat in the top 3 in the ODIs. At 5, he bats too low down the order to have the same impact that he can have at the top of the order. It also puts immense pressure on Morgan to anchor the middle order and also act as the finisher. Bopara at 6 is trying to become the finisher for England. While he has the power game to be more effective than Bell, England is still trying to fit 5 batsmen in the top 6 who all are best fit to bat in the top 3! A long batting order might help, but better management of personnel will help them evolve into a better batting unit that they can become.

India’s issues have been with bating collapses. They are clearly terrified of the batting powerplay and have no convincing method of countering it of late. They messed it up many a time in the world cup and in the recently concluded series in West Indies. While they largely won the world cup on the back of Zaheer Khan and their top 7, their batting collapses left a lot to be desired. The wickets might suit the Englishmen, and like Sri Lanka found out earlier in the summer, it might be hard work for their batsmen too outside of Lord’s and The Oval.

The series might hinge on the bowling form of the English seamers. Dernbach’s match winning performance at Old Trafford on Wednesday might mean one of Samit Patel or Graeme Swann will miss out. Patel’s batting might weigh in his favour, in which case Raina and Jadeja will be relieved.

Cook, Bell and Trott batting at numbers 1, 5 and 3 respectively might not work for England

On the other hand, Indiawill in all likelihood open with Tendulkar and Dravid and approach it the traditional way – keep the wickets in tact during the first 15 overs and capitalize in the last 15. The form of Dravid and Tendulkar will be crucial for India as their young batsmen have not shown the needed technique to survive the new ball. They will be at their dangerous best when the start is solid and there are not many catching men around when the stroke makers come in to bat. Knowing the limitations of this batting side, it will be a surprise if England opt to go with anything less than 4 seamers.

Indian bowling will be tested in the death overs. Both Praveen Kumar and Munaf Patel rely on change of pace and cutters in the end overs. Wickets early will be the key for the Indian bowlers as well as the depth in bowling is negligent. Jadeja is largely a restrictive bowler and Ashwinor Mishra are not consistent yet at the top level. It will be interesting to see if they throw in Varun Aaron and give him the new ball. England can’t have seen much of him, and if it comes off, it will be gamble worth it.

There is enough to look forward to. Hopefully, it will be well contested.

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Comments
  1. rjsays says:

    Losing the T20 was disappointing. At one time Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma were bowling in tandem. Is this what our bowling has come to? Munaf bowled well, always a good, steady bowler to have in the two shorter formats. Not good to see Dravid opening once again. I would have loved to have him at no. 5, especially after his three sixes in the T20, but then he is such a great team man. I would love if India wins this series, but from the inside I want them to lose this otherwise it will be all too easy for the Board and the players. They’ll forget the scars of the test series.

    • thecognitivenomad says:

      I think the “ODI series should be lost, else we’ll forget the test mauling” sentiment is shared by many, including myself.

      Indians are very myopic by nature when looking forward, and behind. I’m not sure if anyone responsible for this loss has really felt the pain of the loss. I did, the author did, and I’m sure even you must have felt it Rajat. We need solutions, and immediately.

      • rjsays says:

        Interesting that you mentioned the word ‘behind’ here too. There has been so much introspection the current team (and for good reason!!) is actually the world champion!

  2. thecognitivenomad says:

    I think England will play Bell at 4, and not 5.

    And Rahane should open with Tendulkar – Dravid can slot in at 3, where he is most comfortable, and hold the innings together. Dravid & Trott, for all you know, may end up playing similar roles for their respective teams.

    I have a feeling India’s bowling will let them down – yeah World Champions, but they haven’t looked anywhere close to the standards set by the Englishmen. Wouldn’t be surprised if the Test trend continues here, although I’m certainly not hoping for it.

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