After thumping the West Indies team 2-1 in the just concluded T20I series, the Men in Blue will now prepare to take them on in a 3-match ODI series. The last time these two teams fought in this format was in 2018 and then the visitors had a number of performers who did well, despite losing the series.
But one thing remains the same since then is that the Indian team is still searching for a batsman to bat at no.4 in the 50-over format. India last played ODIs against the same team in West Indies and performed well in the Caribbean, whitewashing them in their own backyard. One player who was given a chance to flourish there proved to be a successful bet for the Indian team and he now has the backing of former India captain and coach Anil Kumble.
“We have seen Shreyas Iyer’s quality” – Anil Kumble
That batsman was Mumbai’s Shreyas Iyer and he scored 71 and 65 in the two ODIs that were played, helping India win the series. He was brilliant then and has been given a long run in the team in the T20Is as well. Anil Kumble thinks that Iyer is the right choice at no.4, especially with Dhawan out of the series and KL Rahul slated to open the innings.
“With Shikhar (Dhawan) not being there, it again gives KL Rahul chance to open the batting. We have seen Shreyas Iyer’s quality and he has grown in stature, so I would like him to be at number four,” Kumble was quoted as saying by Hindustan Times.
The former cricketer also wanted the Indian bowlers to perform better in the ODI cricket against the Windies, given that their batting is full of power hitters, which can be a real challenge for the home team. “I’d like to see the bowling come through because against West Indies it would be a challenge. They’re all-powerful hitters. The surfaces are going to be good and so, you would want the bowling to come good,” Kumble further added.
The first ODI between the two sides will be played at the M Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai on December 15 and the Indian team has already touched down in the city to begin preparations for the match.
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