India vs West Indies: Key battles that can affect the outcome
India take on a revitalised West Indies team which has won two of their last three matches in the World Cup in Perth on Friday. (Source: Reuters)
By Rishab Darbari
India take on a revitalised West Indies team which has won two of their last three matches in the World Cup in Perth on Friday.
After an initial shock defeat to Ireland, the Windies got their campaign back on track with win against a struggling Pakistan outfit before dismantling Zimbabwe as a result of Chris Gayle’s pyrotechnics. They then sank to disheartening defeat to South Africa after AB de Villiers reminded them of exactly why he’s considered the best batsman of the game. (Full Coverage| Venues | Fixtures)
The Indian team on the other hand has had a comfortable road up till now, with none of their opposition managing to amass 200 runs yet. The bowling attack has recovered from a horrid tour of Australia to produce some quality performances especially from the likes of Ravichandra Ashwin and Mohit Sharma.[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Popj0DcF9_M&w=100&h=315]
As the two teams look to battle it out on Friday, we take a look at some of the key match-ups that will hit Perth.
Jerome Taylor vs Shikhar Dhawan
The West Indian speedster has adapted well to the Australian pitches and is tied third on the leading wicket-takers list for the tournament with nine dismissals at an average of 20. Dhawan, too has finally managed to clear his head and the ropes after a poor tour of Australia and is good form with 224 runs scored after three games. The two will butt heads in Perth and a wicket one way or a six the other could turn tides in this match-up.
Chris Gayle vs Ravichandran Ashwin
Chris Gayle hit a mammoth 215 against Zimbabwe but other than that, he has been average. He is, at the end of the day, one of the most dangerous hitters in the modern game and if he gets his eye in against India, it will be nearly impossible to stop him. Ravichandran Ashwin might just be Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s ace up the sleeve. The spinner has picked up eight wickets at an average of 13 in the competition so far and is thought by many to be the reason for the revival of India’s bowling attack.
Jason Holder vs Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma finally got the much needed time in the middle against UAE in India’s romp last Saturday but has looked vulnerable before that. He will be tested mightily by Jason Holder, who has taken a fair share of damage this tournament but has managed to hold down the opposition in the early overs. The West Indian has five wickets to his name from four games at an average of nearly 44, the key aspect of this stat though is the fact that rarely does the paceman lose his cool early on.
Lendl Simmons vs Mohit Sharma
Mohit Sharma will have a key role to play in the game as he is up against a West Indian middle order that boasts some of the more consistent names in recent West Indian history. Lendl Simmons has scored 152 runs this tournament but the bulk of them came in West Indies disappointing opening loss to Ireland where the middle order batsman scored 102. The rest of his runs came in West Indies’ win over Pakistan in Chirstchurch. The West Indies will be looking up to him to take on the Indian bowling attack and these two utility players will collide in what might be a crucial period in the game, a period which might determine the result of the match itself.
(The writer is an intern with Indianexpress.com)
Source:: Indian Express