Ind vs NZ LIVE in WTC Final: Virat Kohli’s Team India stick to two-spinner policy in Playing XI despite overcast conditions – The washout on Day 1 in Southampton didn’t make an impact on Virat Kohli’s team selection. The team management decided to stick to two-spinner policy despite the overcast conditions suggesting otheriwise.
Taking a spinner out and bring Hanuma Vihari back in the Playing XI to strengthen the batting seems to be the likely choice for skipper Virat Kohli as the weather forecast says there will be intermittent rain over the next five days and playing an extra batsman to tackle New Zealand’s ace pacers will be key. Hence, Ravindra Jadeja is likely to sit out.
Skipper Virat Kohli had earlier announced that India would opt for two spinners in and R Ashwin apart from three pacers, but that decision is likely to change now. The drastic change in Southampton conditions now heavily favour seamers and Kane Williamson-led New Zealand have an edge in that department.
Ind vs NZ LIVE in WTC Final: India likely to change Playing XI – The likes of Trent Boult, Tim Southee, Neil Wagner and Kyle Jamieson will be hot on the heels of Indian batters as they will be assisted by extra swing due to the overcast conditions. The fact that India’s middle-order hasn’t been in best of forms including Virat Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane all have been hit and a miss, an extra batsman in Hanuma Vihari could be key.
Ind vs NZ LIVE in WTC Final: Why should India drop Ravindra Jadeja for Hanuma Vihari?
- The overcast conditions and predicted rain will have a lot of moisture on the Ageas Bowl pitch.
- The moisture will help fast bowlers and seamers extra swing which will trouble the batters.
- With no practice match and a short stay in England, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and others will need some adjusting.
- Furthermore, Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara haven’t been in their best form. Only one Test hundred has come from three combined in the last 10 innings.
- Pujara averages below 30 with his last hundred coming in 2019. Ajinkya Rahane last scored a hundred in Melbourne and since then has averaged only 22.60. Virat Kohli needs to address hs shortcomings against Southee.
- Thus, an extra batsman in the middle-order could help India if the top-order collapse.
- Hanuma Vihari has been in England for the last two months to play County Championship and he has acclimatised to the English conditions. It will help him deal with seamers better than others in Team India.
- To bring him in, the ideal choice is to drop a spinner as India would also need the fast bowlers due to the conditions.
- Ravindra Jadeja is the one who is likely to be dropped to the bench as R Ashwin will be required to deal with New Zealand’s left-handers.
Former captain Sunil Gavaskar also suggested playing an extra batsman in place of a spinner. “The eleven can be changed anytime before the toss. So, I feel like maybe they’ll think of playing another batsman because of the weather. Because these conditions are suitable for New Zealand fast bowlers so Rishabh Pant is at six, he might shift to seven and an extra batsman might play. Seeing this weather, one spinner might be dropped,” Sunil Gavaskar told AajTak,” Sunil Gavaskar told Aaj Tak.
India’s fielding coach R Sridhar also hinted at the possibility of a change in India’s Playing XI. He said the decision to announce the Playing XI considering the pitch before the match. But a decision could be taken before the toss on Saturday.
“The XI which has been announced is the XI which takes the pitch, weather and conditions out of the equation. Having said that, the toss is not yet over. If a decision is taken, it will be taken on the day of the toss,” said India’s fielding coach R Sridhar on Friday.