New Zealand vs India, 4th ODI – India Predicted XI
Leading the team in what will be his 200th ODI will be a monumental occasion for Rohit Sharma.
Updated - Jan 29, 2019 1:23 pm
For the first time in the last ten years, India has managed to clinch an ODI series in New Zealand. As they have humbled the hosts in the first three games of the five-match series, the remaining two matches are a dead rubber. In the Black Caps’ point of view, they have got their pride at stake. After playing good cricket against Pakistan and Sri Lanka, they’ve got a point to prove that they just don’t dominate the relatively weaker teams.
When you flip the coin, the Indian team will be relaxed even though they’ll miss the services of Virat Kohli. Rohit Sharma is a proven leader and has got a good track record. The remainder of the series, for the visitors, will be a place where they’ll get to experiment all possible combinations. Youngsters, who have been warming the bench all this while, are likely to get their opportunities. There could be plenty of chances in the team for the 4th ODI.
Here is the predicted XI for Team India:
Openers (Rohit Sharma (c), Shikhar Dhawan)
Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan will continue to be the opening pair for India. This duo had a good series thus far but they’ve either thrown away the starts or ran out of overs and thus failed to reach the triple-figure mark. They will hope to provide the side with a good start in the fourth ODI. If Shikhar Dhawan gets another good performance under his belt, he could be possibly rested for the fifth ODI which will accommodate one of the youngsters in the team.
Sharma’s good form combined with the additional captaincy responsibility might well get the best out of him. In 8 ODIs where he led the team, he scored 534 runs at a mammoth average of 107. Also, leading the team in what will be his 200th ODI will be a monumental occasion for the 31-year-old.
Middle Order (Shubman Gill, Ambati Rayudu, MS Dhoni (wk), Dinesh Karthik)
Shubman Gill is most likely to be the direct swap for Virat Kohli. The regular skipper has heaped a lot of praise on the 19-year-old and he could be making his ODI debut. Gill, who is claimed to be a great talent, will get exposure to the international stage and he could brighten his chances to make it into the World Cup squad.
There is quite some ambiguity about the next spot in the lineup. With MS Dhoni most likely to be fit by Thursday, he will be roped into the eleven without a second thought. So, there are a few combinations to work around in the middle-order. Only two players between Ambati Rayudu, Dinesh Karthik and Kedar Jadhav will feature in the eleven.
So, if Rohit, as he said earlier, prefers MS Dhoni at four, it could open up spaces for Kedar Jadhav and Dinesh Karthik to follow. Both these players have been in good form of late and have proven their prowess. However, Ambati Rayudu is still not at his complete best and looks a tad rusty. Hence, giving him a game is essential.
Therefore, the management might opt for him along with DK as Jadhav had an opportunity to play four games straight. All these theories will be scrapped if MSD doesn’t regain his fitness. There could be a possibility of trying out the combination of Dhoni at four followed by Jadhav and Dinesh in the fifth ODI.
All Rounders (Hardik Pandya)
It is important that the audience also forgive Hardik Pandya for the mistakes that he committed. He clearly repents what he’s done and has shown what he is capable of in the third ODI. With his presence, he completely changes the dynamics of the team and is more than capable of bowling his complete quota of ten overs. He is an asset on the field and can clear the rope at will while batting. He is set to be one of the most important members in the Indian lineup for the signature event coming up in June.
Bowlers (Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav, Khaleel Ahmed, Yuzvendra Chahal)
There is one change possible in the bowling lineup as well. Mohammed Shami is surely in the best form of his life at the moment and has hardly put a foot wrong. But, the pacer has been playing some non-stop cricket for a while now. First, he played is all the games of the Test and ODI series against Australia. Then the ODI games against the Kiwis might have taken a toll on his body.
Hence, this could be a nice excuse to give another opportunity to someone like Khaleel Ahmed. After just one bad performance against the Aussies, he was axed out of the eleven. Another opportunity before the World Cup will help him prove his potential. Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal will continue to feature in the eleven.