Rishabh Pant or KL Rahul as the keeper, the focus as we look at the stats preview and predicted playing 11 for Team India for the 1st ODI vs England.
It’s 2-0 at the end of the T20I series for Team India with India winning the Test as well as the T20I series. Both the series so far have had an interesting outcome. The visitors, England started well winning the first match of the series, but couldn’t carry the momentum to ultimately lose the Test and T20I series 1-3 and 2-3 respectively.
The final leg of the series, the ODI series is much more important for England than India as England’s World Cup 2023 qualification carries some weightage from this series. Whereas for Team India, they are already qualified, and this series would be more about regrouping as a team before IPL 2021 kicks-in.
From Team India’s squad stand-point, three new debutants have been included in the squad in the form of Krunal Pandya, Suryakumar Yadav, and Prasidh Krishna. The team also sees the return of experienced pros, Rohit Sharma and Bhuvneshwar Kumar. In addition, Washington Sundar and Mohammed Siraj have been added to the ODI squad after a gap of more than 2 years.
So, who makes the final 11 for the first ODI? There are many interesting choices and selection dilemmas to look at. Let’s look at the stats preview and predicted playing 11 for Team India for the 1st ODI between India and England. Before that, let’s quickly skim through the official ODI squad for Team India.
India vs England 2021: Team India’s Official ODI Squad:
Batsmen: KL Rahul (WK), Rishabh Pant (WK), Rohit Sharma (VC), Shikhar Dhawan, Shreyas Iyer, Shubman Gill, Suryakumar Yadav & Virat Kohli (C)
All-rounders: Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya & Washington Sundar
Bowlers: Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Siraj, Prasidh Krishna, Shardul Thakur, T Natarajan & Yuzvendra Chahal
India vs England 2021: Key ODI Stats
Total ODIs Played: 100
India: 53 Wins // England: 42 Wins // NR: 3 // Tie: 2
India vs England ODI Team Stats:
387/5- Highest Team Total by Team India // Rajkot, 2008
125 – Lowest Team Total by England // Jaipur, 2006
747 – Highest Match aggregate // Cuttack, 2017
202 runs– Highest Victory by Runs Margin by England // Lord’s,1975
9 wickets – Highest Victory by Wickets Margin by England // Leeds, 1982
India vs England ODI Batting Stats:
1546 – Most Runs by MS Dhoni (India)
65.1 – Best Batting Average by Mohd. Azharuddin (India) (Min 500 Runs)
102.3 – Highest Strike Rate by Virender Sehwag (India) (Min 500 Runs)
158(145) – Highest Score by Andrew Strauss (Eng)
12 – Most 50+ Scores by Suresh Raina (India)
34 – Most Sixes by MS Dhoni (India)
173 – Most Fours by Sachin Tendulkar (India)
India vs England ODI Bowling Stats:
40 – Most Wickets by James Anderson (Eng)
16.6 – Best Bowling Average by Paul Jarvis (Eng) (Min 15 Wickets)
3.8 – Best Economy Rate by Kapil Dev (India) (Min 15 Wickets)
21.4 – Best Bowling Strike Rate by Paul Jarvis (Eng)
6/23 – Best Bowling figures by Ashish Nehra (India)
2 – Most 4-wicket haul by Ajit Agarkar (India)
24 – Most Maidens by James Anderson (Eng)
1st ODI Predicted Playing 11 – Team India
Openers: Rohit Sharma & Shikhar Dhawan
The last two times India played an ODI series vs New Zealand and Australia, Rohit Sharma wasn’t present in the squad. While Shikhar Dhawan was one of the openers, the other opener slot fluctuated between Prithvi Shaw, Shubman Gill, and Mayank Agarwal.
With Rohit Sharma back in the squad as the main opener, Shubman Gill, who last opened for India vs Australia should make way for him. Hence, Team India’s best opening pair in the last 7 years, Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan should be the opening duo for the first ODI.
Middle-order: Virat Kohli (C), Shreyas Iyer & KL Rahul (WK)
The main question for Team India would be the choice of the wicket-keeper. It comes as a surprise that, KL Rahul, who wasn’t a designated wicket-keeper in the T20Is is now designated as wicket-keeper in ODIs alongside Rishabh Pant. But, who makes it to the playing 11?
Shreyas Iyer, Team India’s designated number 4 for some time now has done well at that position, and removing him would send a wrong signal, and may hamper the player’s confidence. So, ultimately, it has to be KL Rahul or Rishabh Pant making it to the squad as the wicket-keeper finisher.
But, has Virat Kohli ever believed in historical performance? He has always believed in what’s best for the Team in the current situation. While Iyer may have done really well in ODIs, Pant’s rising form off late can also be a decisive thing. So, don’t be surprised if Iyer is dropped, and both, KL Rahul and Rishabh Pant play.
All-rounders: Hardik Pandya & Krunal Pandya
The best news for Team India in the T20Is was Hardik Pandya bowling his full quota of 4 overs. But, will he be able to bowl 10 overs in ODIs? That’s still a question mark, and Team India may not want to risk by playing only 5 bowlers. Hence, one of Krunal Pandya or Washington Sundar should make it to the XI.
While Washington Sundar would return to the ODI squad after a gap of 3 years, Krunal Pandya would be making his maiden appearance in ODIs. The selection of one of these should also be dependant on who among Kuldeep or Chahal plays. If Kuldeep is played then Krunal will make it to the playing XI, and if Chahal plays then Washington should make it to the playing XI.
Bowlers: Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shardul Thakur, Kuldeep Yadav & T Natarajan
The return of Bhuvi in the ODI side means he is confirmed to play as the leading pacer. If the pitch assists pace, we should see Shardul Thakur and T Natarajan featuring in the playing 11. However, if pitch assists some spin, we may see the combination of KulCha in the playing 11 as Hardik can use used as the third pacer.
Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav shall compete for the leading spinner of the squad. Chahal is been slightly off colour post IPL 2020, and he was also dropped from the final ODI vs Australia with Kuldeep Replacing him. Given this indication, Kuldeep Yadav should play ahead of Chahal for the first ODI; at least.
India vs England 2021 – Predicted Playing 11 for Team India for 1st ODI:
Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli (C), Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul (WK), Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Shardul Thakur, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav & T Natarajan.
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