Jo Jeeta wo hee Sikandar. The winner of the India West Indies T20 International in Mumbai later this evening (Wednesday) will also win the three-match T20I series which has been contested so intensely over the first two games.
Hosts India have many flaws to iron out as they take on the World Champions of this shortest format of the game. Under Kieron Pollard, the resurgent Caribbeans are playing like a true champion, whereas Virat Kohli-led Indians have been their own nemesis with poor fielding, weak bowling and a batting where the men in the middle have shown little urgency to push the scoring rate.
The chase masters in the Blue have badly faltered in setting targets.
India will also be looking forward to vice-captain Rohit Sharma to click on his home ground. If the hitman gets going, half of the teams’ questions are answered. Mumbai will also be expecting another blitzkrieg from the city boy Shivam Dube. Shreyas Iyer is another Mumbaikar due for a big score and can prove to be a game changer in the middle order.
However, as a dejected Kohli has said after the defeat in the second T20I at Thiruvananthapuram two days ago no score will suffice if the bowers and the fielders don’t get their act right.
The Caribbean might has been to the fore even during the defeat in their series opener at Hyderabad. The Pollard and Company doesn’t have to do anything special except for maintaining their momentum.
An intriguing battle is on the cards on the Indian shores of Arabian sea in India’s business capital.
India: Virat Kohli (Capt.), Rohit Sharma, K.L. Rahul, Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Rishabh Pant, Shivam Dube, Washington Sundar, Ravindra Jadeja, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Deepak Chahar, Mohammed Shami, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Sanju Samson.
West Indies: Kieron Pollard (Capt.), Lendl Simmons, Evin Lewis, Shimron Hetmyer, Brandon King, Nicholas Pooran, Jason Holder, Keemo Paul, Khary Pierre, Denesh Ramdin, Sherfane Rutherford, Hayden Walsh Jr., Fabian Allen, Sheldon Cottrell and Kesrick Williams.
Umpires: Nitin Menon and Nandan; Third umpire: C. Shamshuddin; Fourth umpire: Anil Chaudhary.
Match referee: David Boon.
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The broadcast will start with a LIVE preview show from 5:30 pm. Indian film star Deepika Padukone will also be appearing on the preview show.
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