After taking the ODI series 3-0 and making a winning start in the first T20I, a confident Indian team will be looking to make it two in a row when it goes up against the West Indies in the second T20I at the Eden Gardens on Friday. Despite missing some regular starters, India did well to win the first T20I by six wickets and take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.
For West Indies, who defeated England 3-2 and then arrived in India, Friday’s match becomes a do-or-die one. Kieron Pollard and Co. will need a collective effort to square the series and register their first win on the tour, otherwise, they risk going back home empty-handed.
India, on the other hand, will be pleased by Ravi Bishnoi’s maiden international outing on Wednesday. With his googlies, Bishnoi changed the complexion of the match by taking out Roston Chase and Rovman Powell in the same over, taking the ‘Player of the Match’ award.
His 2/17 in four overs set the base for India winning the first T20I. Bishnoi’s performance will please the Indian team management ahead of the men’s T20 World Cup in Australia later in the year.
On the batting front, despite a timely knock by Rohit Sharma at the start and with Suryakumar Yadav finishing the chase, India will be hoping that the mini-wobble of three wickets for 21 runs will be corrected in the second match. For the West Indies, their top-order batters have to fire to post a total better than 157 in the first match and try to break the lean efforts from the ODIs.
Nicholas Pooran shone for the visitors’ with a 43-ball 61 apart from captain Pollard striking some boundaries in the final overs. But West Indies will be hoping that they will score more in the middle overs. They will be happy with the fact that their spinners, Akeal Hosein and Fabian Allen, managed to trouble the Indian batters in the chase of 158.
Expect an even battle on Friday between two teams who are still trying out options on the road to the Men’s T20 World Cup. For India, a win will extend their winning streak while West Indies will strive to correct their mistakes and stop the winning juggernaut of the hosts.
India: Ishan Kishan, Rohit Sharma (captain), Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant (wicketkeeper), Venkatesh Iyer, Deepak Chahar, Shardul Thakur, Harshal Patel, Mohammed Siraj, Yuzvendra Chahal, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav, Deepak Hooda, Avesh Khan, Ruturaj Gaikwad and Ravi Bishnoi
West Indies: Brandon King, Kyle Meyers, Nicholas Pooran (wicketkeeper), Rovman Powell, Kieron Pollard (captain), Jason Holder, Fabian Allen, Romario Shepherd, Odean Smith, Akeal Hosein, Sheldon Cottrell, Dominic Drakes, Darren Bravo, Shai Hope, Roston Chase and Hayden Walsh