ICC World Cup 2019: Match 38, England vs India, Preview – Semi-finals on mind as hosts face Kohli’s juggernaut

ICC World Cup 2019: Match 38, England vs India, Preview – Semi-finals on mind as hosts face Kohli’s juggernaut

Both these sides have played seven times in World Cups, one game ended in a tie and the other six were shared equally.

Team India
Team India. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Just the way this country was saffronized in the recent Lok Sabha elections with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) sweeping away a thumping majority, we will witness the same colour predominantly shining on the pitch when Virat Kohli’s India take the field on Sunday. The Men in Blue will be donning a new jersey which has a fair share of Orange combining with blue, which left the fans in splits on social media. 

Since the Indian side is playing so well, the fans did have time to take that as a debate. Nothing similar is the case for England, who have experienced a debacle in the last two games which could potentially ruin their biggest dream. A defeat here for the English could seriously break their wall of defence which currently is being hammered by Bangladesh, Pakistan and partially Sri Lanka.

The last time a cricket match was held in Birmingham between Pakistan and New Zealand, Mitchell Santner was turning the ball so viciously that the Indian spinners would be dying to have a go on this pitch. If such a track is really on cards, it will be very difficult to battle the Indians as they have mastered playing on slow tracks for a long time.

Playing Combinations

England

Jason Roy will undergo a fitness test and the final call will be made on the morning of the match. England will prefer an even a half baked Roy over James Vince who has really struggled to get going. Ben Stokes has had a fantastic couple of games against Sri Lanka and Australia but Jos Buttler’s form is a huge concern for Eoin Morgan. Jofra Archer, Mark Wood and Chris Woakes form a fantastic trio and they do have two quality spinners in Moeen Ali and Adil Rashid who could be more useful than what it appears on the surface.

Probable XI

James Vince/Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root, Eoin Morgan (C), Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler (wk), Chris Woakes, Moeen Ali, Adil Rashid, Jofra Archer, Mark Wood

India

KL Rahul has got a couple of decent starts but has thrown it away. The likes of MS Dhoni and Kedar Jadhav have been under the pump for not batting at a swift strike-rate but the presence of Hardik Pandya after them is a huge bonus. Mohammed Shami has proved his skill even at times there is little lateral movement which means even if Bhuvneshwar Kumar is fully fit it will be difficult for Kohli to replace him. Chahal and Kuldeep have been doing their job brilliantly thus far and might have a bigger role to play this time.

Probable XI

KL Rahul, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli (C), Vijay Shankar, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni (wk), Hardik Pandya, Mohammed Shami, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah

Focus will be on

Jonny Bairstow (England)

Jonny Bairstow’s comments a couple of days ago made a lot of English fans furious and now he has to make up for it by making his bat do the talking. He has had a par campaign as of now, with 245 runs at an average of 35 which is fine for an opener. But the form he showed leading up to the World Cup has eluded him so far in the big tournament and with Jason Roy unavailable, they need the Yorkshire man to be at his best.

Vijay Shankar (India)

If the all-rounder fails to put up a good contribution this game, this could be his final appearance in this World Cup with the likes of Dinesh Karthik and Rishabh Pant waiting in the background. Although Kohli suggested Shankar’s bowling will come in handy for the team, he hasn’t used it at all since the game against Pakistan. This is a huge test for the Tamil Nadu cricketer and he will be desperate to prove a point to his management and the fans.

Head to head

Matches Played – 99 | England won – 41 | India won – 53 | Tied – 2 | No Result – 3

Stat Attack

3 – Both these sides played four times in Birmingham and India won on all those occasions.

50 – This will be Kuldeep Yadav’s 50th ODI.

Broadcast Details

TV – Star Sports

Live streaming– Hotstar

Match Timings – 15:00 IST; 10:30 local