Date & Time: Sunday, December 22, 13:30 IST
Venue: Barabati Stadium, Cuttack, India
Both teams tough it out for the last time this series for one of them to be crowned champions
The series has been equal in terms of challenge for both the teams, including the T20I series. The West Indies in particular have been exceptional in applying pressure on India. The young West Indian batsmen proved their might with some fierce hitting and sensible batting as well. However, the West Indies bowling hasn’t been up to the mark as all their bowlers have been bleeding runs, none of their bowlers have an economy of less than 6.0 in this ODI series. India’s middle order has been the highlight of this tour with Iyer and Pant taking the limelight. Shreyas Iyer has scored four half centuries on the trot and Pant displayed good composure in both the matches. In the bowling department, Shami leads the way with 4 wickets and Kuldeep in courtesy of his Hat-trick in the last match has three with an economy of 4.9.
The openers from both the sides have had a great ODI series, Rohit and Rahul both got to a century in the last match and Shai Hope has been a consistent performer for the West Indies scoring a century and a half century in the previous game, the same for the middle order as well. Rohit, Hope and Hetmyer have a PPM of over 100 in this tour, but Rohit and Hope have appeared in the dream team in both their matches. Shreyas Iyer and Rishabh Pant also have been heaping points in the fantasy teams and both have been a part of the dream team in both the matches of this series.
For the bowlers it has to be said that this is one series that they would want to forget. The pick of bowlers has been Keemo Paul, Sheldon Cottrell and Mohammed Shami, whether its about wickets or the points only they have done decent enough.
India is dealt with a blow in form of Deepak Chahar who is ruled out of the series because of a back injury. Navdeep Saini has been called in as his replacement. The question raises who would they play in Cuttack, will India go with Chahal or Saini?
The West Indies bowling seems to be a bother, they bought in Khary Pierre in place of Walsh in the second ODI, but he also couldn’t be effective. Will they get in Shepherd and go with just one spinner? We need to wait and watch.
India probable XI: Rohit Sharma, Lokesh Rahul, Virat Kohli (c), Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant (wk), Kedar Jadhav, Ravindra Jadeja, Shardul Thakur, Mohammed Shami, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal/Navdeep Saini
West Indies probable XI: Evin Lewis, Shai Hope, Shimron Hetmyer, Roston Chase, Nicholas Pooran, Kieron Pollard (c), Jason Holder, Keemo Paul, Alzarri Joseph, Khary Pierre/Romario Shepherd, Sheldon Cottrell.
The nature of the wicket has been generally slow at the Barabati Stadium with an average score of 266 in the first innings since 2000. However, in the last two matches at this venue India posted scores of 363 against Sri Lanka and 381 against England. Dew is one of the major factors to be considered at Cuttack, the pacers bowl better in the second innings than first innings. Spinners might find it hard to grip.
It has become a trend for Rohit to set high scores for India. In all these year since 2013, he has the highest individual score for an Indian batsman, which shows the impact he has created. This is the reason why he becomes one of the must in the fantasy team. In this series he has a PPM of 122.0 and has appeared in the dream team in both the matches.
The absence of Dhawan is somewhat a blessing in disguise for Rahul and he has been utilizing it to full potential. He alongside Rohit scored a magnificent century in the previous match. His PPM beefed up after his performance in the second match, he now has a PPM of 69.5 in the two matches, his century led him to be in the dream team last match.
Iyer seems to be sealing the number 4 spot that has been a troubling India for a long time. His four fifties in four consecutive innings implies that he is one of the predominant picks in the fantasy team. His MDTA of 1.67 in ODI’s is something that highlights his impressive performance.
Rishabh Pant seems to be adjusting well to the situation and showing his true talent. In the first match it was necessary for him to anchor the innings and score at steady rate, which he succeeded and in the second match he went berserk to help India reach a total of 387. His dynamic batting in the middle order is something that everyone would love to have in their fantasy team, and he hasn’t disappointed. He has been a part of the dream team in both the matches.
Mr Consistent of The West Indies is in fascinating form. In the last five ODI matches he has played in India, he has scored two centuries and two fifties. In fact his last one year has been stupendous for him in ODI piling runs at an average close to 60, hence he has been one of the regulars in the dream team. Of all the players from both the teams Shai Hope has the best dream team appearance ratio in internationals with 1.38.
Sheldon Cottrell continues his impressive performance from the T20I series. He has bagged 4 wickets this series and has the second best PPM for a bowler in this tour. In a series where batsmen have dominated Sheldon Cottrell has a PPM of 57.0 and has made it to the dream team in both the matches.
Though the bowlers haven’t had a series to remember Shami yet again displays his class. Along with Cottrell, he happens to be the highest wicket taker of the series, but Shami has conceded less than 6.0. He has the best PPM for an Indian bowler this tour with 56.0.