Thursday, March 5, 2015

West Indies Aim to Derail Indian Express!

India vs West Indies, WACA Stadium in Perth on 6th March 2015 - Match Preview

India take on the West Indies at the famed WACA in Perth tomorrow and it will be a chance for India to seal their spot at the top of Pool B. West Indies on the other hand, will be looking to win this one and get in to the Quarter Finals with out any hiccups. India have won all their three games thus far, against Pakistan, South Africa and UAE. West Indies on the other hand have had a mixed bag as they lost to Ireland before defeating the Pakistanis and Zimbabweans and then going down to the AB De Villiers blitz.

The Indian batting has regained its form with Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma both in the runs lately. Kohli has had a couple of decent outings as well and he also hit that century against Pakistan. Both Raina and Rahane have hit 50's and are looking solid. India can give a chance to somebody like Jadeja or Dhoni to bat up the order as they have not had much of a hit out in the middle which can be crucial in the knock out games.

The Indian bowling has been a revelation and quite frankly they have exceeded all expectations so far with their superb performances. Bhuvi was back in the last game against Afghanistan as Shami was out injured and he too bowled okay. Umesh Yadav and Mohit Sharma have both looked good and I expect Shami to be back for this game as well. The fast WACA will certainly suit these bowlers and we can expect R Ashwin to generate a lot of bounce as well which was on display when India played the Afghans here last week.

Indian pacers Umesh Yadav and Dhaval Kulkarni sweat it out in the nets ahead 
of the clash against West Indies at WACA, Perth

The West Indies batting has loads of potential but their batsmen have been far too inconsistent to make any sort of an impression. A lot relies on Chris Gayle and his double century against the Zimbabweans remains the only 200 so far in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015. The WACA is very good for shot making and Gayle will be hoping to repeat the same pyrotechnics against India. Marlon Samuels is also a batsman who has had special liking towards the Indian bowlers in the past. Darren Sammy, Andre Russel, Lendl Simmons and Denesh Ramdin are all dangerous hitters of the cricket ball and can give it a proper thwack if the platform is set.

The West Indian bowling has been led by Jerome Taylor who has been fast and hostile and is the highest wicket taker for the Windies in this tournament. Jason Holder has also grabbed early wickets but his death bowling leaves a lot to be desired. They might trouble the Indian batsmen with their pace and bounce on the WACA wicket. Benn, with his height might also savor this pitch and he will lead the spin duties.

Key Battles: India vs West Indies

Chris Gayle vs Umesh Yadav

Marlon Samuels and Darren Sammy vs R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja

Jerome Taylor vs Virat Kohli

This is an important match for both sides, though more so for the West Indians. The Indians will look to win this one and top their Pool so that they might face either England or Bangladesh in the Quarter Finals. If India loses this one then they can finish in the second spot and might have to face either Australia or Sri Lanka which will certainly be a more daunting proposition. The West Indians will have to work very hard to make it to the Quarters if they lose this one.

PS - The image used is courtesy www.espncricinfo.com

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