Tuesday, November 19, 2013

1st ODI - India v West Indies Nehru Stadium, Kochi, 21st Nov 2013 (Thursday) : Match Preview

Do you have any idea what was the total runs scored by both Indian and Australian teams during the last cricket series during the latter’s visit of India? It was a whopping 3,614 runs. For sure all the matches in the past series were batsmen dominated matches, although in some matches bowlers also played a role in deciding the fate of the match.
But with all the hula bulla about the little master’s retirement gradually shedding from the arena, now again the time has come for serious cricket. The Indian team is gearing up for another ODI series against the West Indies team.
 India won the last ODI series against Australia mainly due to the superb performance of the Indian batsmen, like Kohli, Sharma, Dhoni, etc. India already showed their better performance on the recent concluded test series against West Indies, even though both the test matches were over showed by the theme of Sachin’s retirement.

The 1st of the 3 match series is scheduled to be played at the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium, Kochi and the focus is on the 22-yard strip laid out for the match. Although traditionally the pitch in Kochi has favoured batsmen a lot, but in the recent years the pitch has shown symptom of slowing down at the second innings.

In the first match played on this pitch in 1998 India posted a handsome total in excess of 300 and that record has been breached don this pitch at least 3 more times. But in recent days as the match progresses and teams batting second have found it difficult to chase. 
The last match played here in January earlier this year saw England getting bowled out for 158 while they were chasing 286 set by India. 

The Kochi stadium's pitch curator Mr. PV Ramachandran says that the pitch is not going to be a batsman's paradise. He said "Personally, I prefer wickets which have something in it for both bowlers and batsmen. I think the pitch will be best for batting first. It might not offer great help for fast bowlers, but as the game goes on, it will definitely help the slower bowlers. I think 280 could be a winning score on this wicket." 

So to know whether the recent trend of chasing big runs and finally winning the game will be repeated in the forthcoming match in Kochi, we have to wait until the final overs of the game. 

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