India vs West Indies 4th ODI: Bench strength the talking point for India

By: Express Web Desk | Antigua | Updated: July 2, 2017 1:14 am
india vs west indies, ind vs wi, ind vs wi 4th odi, india cricket India look to win the series against West Indies in Antigua. (Source: AP)

India will not lose the one-day international series against West Indies and given that, they should try their bench strength in the fourth ODI in Antigua. Having won second and third games in Port-of-Spain and Antigua respectively, India took an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match series. The first game was washed out due to rain in Port-of Spain.

Captain Virat Kohli, after the win in fourth ODI, said that India may try their bench. Rishsabh Pant and Dinesh Karthik will be waiting to grab the opportunity if they get one in Antigua.

India have enjoyed a good series. They are playing in front of negligible crowd but that hasn’t bored them and pulled them down. Indian batsmen have been in some amazing form. Shikhar Dhawan had a rare failure in third ODI but his opening partner Ajinkya Rahane has been in some good form. After a fifty in the first ODI, in which only 39.2 overs were possible, he scored a fine century in the second before scoring another half-century in the third ODI.

MS Dhoni also showed his class in the fourth ODI scoring unbeaten 78 despite his slow start. At 35, Dhoni will be scrutinised more than anyone else as India prepare to get ready for the 2019 World Cup by which Dhoni will be 37.

He has shown no downward slump in his wicketkeeping. Be it catch or stumping, Dhoni has been at the top of his game. Now, as India continues to search for a finisher, he can be ideal to judge the player who fits the best.

For West Indies, the wait for a series win will continues. They haven’t won a series in the last three years and will now have to wait for another series to start. They would have still been alive in this series had they won the third ODI but their batsmen choose a bad day to not fire. Chasing 252 for a win, West Indies suffered a 93-run loss.

On a damp pitch in Antigua, batting was difficult but West Indies bowlers did give some easy runs to Indian batsmen. On the other hand, Indian bowlers did not do so. The pitch get a bit better to bat but West Indies players need to show up on the field and make India work hard for their third win in a row.

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