After taking an unassailable lead in the three-match T20 series against West Indies, the men-in-blue are all set to play the final encounter at Providence Stadium in Guyana. The Indian team has been clinical in the series thus far and will be wanting some more of the same. West Indies, on the other hand, suffered two horrific defeats and looked slumped and shattered from a distance.
The major overhaul begins with the batting. They struggled to 95/9 and managed 98 in the second match before rain halted the game. The top order has been woeful, with Evin Lewis falling for 0 in both games. The batting has been backed up only by Kieron Pollard and Nicholas Pooran. With no support from the batsmen, the bowlers have struggled. In the second game, the likes of Sheldon Cottrell, Oshane Thomas, and Keemo Paul were good in patches, but they have lacked consistent penetration.
On the other hand, India also has had its fair share of problems. The bowling has been their major strength while the batting has issues. Rishabh Pant has failed in the first two games, and a lot of questions have been asked about whether he can take the burden of being the first choice keeper in all the three formats. KL Rahul, who did not play the first two games, could play on Tuesday. Washington Sundar and Krunal Pandya have chipped in at vital times while Navdeep Saini has been impressive, along with Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Khaleel Ahmed.
Pitch and Weather:
The first two games of the series were played in Florida; however, the final game will shift to Guyana. The city is expected to experience a passing shower in the morning; however, it is expected to stay clear for the larger part of the day. The pitch, on the other hand, is expected to be batting friendly, but batsmen may experience some lateral movement of the wickets at the start of their inning.
It is highly unexpected that India will tinker with their opening combination. Shikhar Dhawan seems to have recovered well from his injury and had a decent outing in the second T20 International even when he failed to convert the start into a big score. Rohit Sharma, on the other hand, has been India’s most successful batsman in the series so far. He has not only timed the ball to perfection but has also been able to provide all-important starts. The skipper Virat Kohli will bat at three and certainly be followed by wicket-keeper batsman Rishabh Pant.
India will be tempted to try KL Rahul in the mix as Manish Pandey has failed considerably to grab the opportunity. The bowling has come good for team India, with Khaleel Ahmed and Navdeep Saini being able to provide wickets upfront. Having won the series, India may play Chahar brothers in place of Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Ravindra Jadeja.
Probable XI: Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli (c), KL Rahul, Rishabh Pant (wk), Krunal Pandya, Washington Sundar, Deepak Chahar, Navdeep Saini, Khaleel Ahmed, Rahul Chahar.
In the series so far, the West Indies team has gone with two different opening combinations trying John Campbell and Sunil Narine in a game each. However, Narine is expected to retain his place at the top for the final International. Nicholas Pooran and Kieron Pollard will certainly occupy the number three and four-position, respectively.
Oshane Thomas has looked as the X-factor for the Windies along with Keemo Paul and Sheldon Cottrell. The skipper Carlos Brathwaite will continue to feature in the team as the batting all-rounder.
Probable XI: Sunil Narine, Evin Lewis, Nicholas Pooran (wk), Kieron Pollard, Shimron Hetmyer, Carlos Brathwaite (c), Rovman Powell, Keemo Paul, Oshane Thomas, Sheldon Cottrell, Khary Pierre.
Total Matches Played: 13
Won by West Indies: 5
Won by India: 7
No result/ Abandoned: 1
Players to Vouch for:
West Indies: Kieron Pollard
India: Virat Kohli