Both the sides will be aiming at the same result when India will take on West Indies at Oval in their 2nd outing of the tournament. Fighting for the berth in the semis, the players will be looking to do their best as they play for the pride of their country.
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The clash at Oval is going to be the encounter between so many players that know each other’s game quite well. The players have just faced each other in IPL recently and both the sides are full of their major players who know the strengths as well as weaknesses of their opponent. Only few weeks back, the captains of both the sides, Dwayne Bravo and MS Dhoni were the teammates in Chennai Super Kings. Chris Gayle and Virat Kohli were the key players for Royal Challengers Bangalore and Kieron Pollard was playing under the captaincy of Chris Gayle in the Mumbai outfit. But the equations have changed upside down now.
After winning their opening matches of in group B, both these sides just need a victory for confirming their spot in final four teams of the tournament. Both sides will not show any kind of mercy as they battle out for their pride. In-form batsman from West Indies Marlon Samules warned the Indians by his statement as he said Caribbeans will be looking into the eyes of the Indians and they have all the ammo for rattling the Indians out in helpful English conditions.
On paper, India look to be a far better side than West Indies. The batting line appears to have superb touch as they have been scoring past 300 in every game since they have arrived in England. Indians changed the batting order slightly in the first game against Protease as they dropped Murli Vijay for accommodating Rohit Sharma in the opening slot.
Occupying the crease will be important in all the games being played here. Same was done by Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan who blunted the South African pacers together and provided their team with a solid stand up front with their 127 runs partnership. Most probably India will look to go with same combination that won them the match at Cardiff.
Despite of the fact that they have enormous potential in their ranks, West Indies still remain inconsistent side. They didn’t play their test captain Darren Sammy against Pakistan and this represented their confidence and depth in the squad. But still the batting weaknesses stepped forward as they had a narrow escape and won the low scoring match against Pakistan with just 2 wickets in hand.
The side has all the talent and experience with which they can challenge the big Indian side that has the reputation of living up to the expectations of their fans and team management. The track at Oval doesn’t seem to have any glitches and if their top 4, in the likes of Gayle, Charles, Bravo and Marlon Samules, mange to get through the starting overs that will more likely be bowled by Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ishant Sharma and Umesh Yadav then we can expect to see a big total on the board.
So far, the starting 15 overs are playing the deciding role in the Champions Trophy matches. So, West Indies will need to capitalize on every opportunity to score during the first 15 if they have to put an impacting score ahead of the in-depth batting line of India.
In bowling department Sunil Narine, Kemar Roach and Ravi Rampaul will be the deciding factor in favor of the Caribbean side.