England vs India, 3rd ODI: Focus on Virat Kohli as India eye series win in Manchester

India will look to end the England tour on a high as the Rohit Sharma-led side needs to win the series decider against England to take home the three-match One Day International series on Sunday. After 2018 and 2021, it will be the third time that an ODI series between England and India will enter a winner-takes-it-all decider match.

The Indian team is expected to tweak its batting template from cautious to a more fearless one in the series-deciding third ODI against England in Manchester on Sunday.

ROHIT, DHAWAN & KOHLI

The famed trio of Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli will have to put their hands up to help the tourists tackle the swing and seam bowling of England pacers.

Rohit’s approach in most of the games isn’t a problem, but Indian team management led by head coach Rahul Dravid will have its own set of issues if 37-year-old Dhawan is their choice going into next year’s 2023 ODI World Cup.

While the ODI World Cup is still 15 months away, it needs to be seriously deliberated on whether Rohit, Dhawan and Kohli will be India’s Nos. 1, 2 and 3 going forward.

The scrutiny lens on talismanic batter Virat Kohli is set to go up a notch, too. Kohli’s prolonged lean patch has been a burning question and a matter of intense debate among cricket followers, especially with a Men’s T20 World Cup in Australia just three months away. Another low score at Manchester will increase the decibel levels on Kohli’s lean patch.

INDIA’s BOWLING

Bumrah has hit the straps and Mohammed Shami more often than not produces those unplayable wicket-taking deliveries. Yuzvendra Chahal has altered his technique as he is bowling a tad slower and letting the ball hang in the air to create deception.

Prasidh Krishna, with his ability to get bounce even from length, will only get better and Hardik Pandya’s bowling pace has certainly brought smiles back in the Indian camp.

The only worrying aspect will be Ravindra Jadeja’s sharp decline as a potent left-arm spinner, which probably has gone unnoticed and papered over by impressive performances by the others.

SQUADS

England: Jos Buttler (Captain), Moeen Ali, Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Harry Brook, Brydon Carse, Sam Curran, Liam Livingstone, Craig Overton, Matthew Parkinson, Jason Roy, Phil Salt, Reece Topley and David Willey.

India: Rohit Sharma (Captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Ishan Kishan, Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant (wicketkeeper), Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Shardul Thakur, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Jasprit Bumrah, Prasidh Krishna, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj and Arshdeep Singh.

— ENDS —

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