July 14, Saturday; 15:30 IST
Live on SPN, streaming on SonyLiv
The main picture
England’s problems in the first ODI were familiar, but the positive for them is, they are not in an unfamiliar situation. They bounced back strongly against Kuldeep Yadav and India the last time they were comprehensively beaten, albeit in a different format. And, after being thumped on Thursday, the home team have to revisit what they did in the aftermath of the Manchester T20I to conquer Kuldeep and pave the way for beating India.
Considering that he is England’s best batsman and more so against spin, Joe Root’s dismissals to Kuldeep on this tour—in Manchester, he was beaten on the outside by a googly and stumped on the first ball, and on Thursday, he was beaten by a traditional chinaman delivery that spun a long way and caught him leg before wicket—tell you the size of the challenge confronting the English batting lineup in the two remaining ODIs. They are not picking him from the hand, but the more serious issue is the position they are getting themselves into when the ball is in flight, drifting and taking an excruciable amount of time to land.
The conditions are, quite curiously, whichever way you want to spin it, against the home team, but Eoin Morgan and co. must show more muscle in the two key areas (batting against Kuldeep and bowling to India’s top three) if they are to come back and level the series on Saturday.
Virat Kohli said in the post-match interview after the first ODI, that India feel like they are playing at home with the level of support they are receiving and the kind of weather they are playing in. Kohli also spoke about India’s aim of winning the remainder of the ODIs on the back of a comprehensive win in the series opener. A 3-0 series win for India will enable them to move atop the ICC ODI rankings and such is the morale within the camp that the Men in Blue are poised for another strong showing.
Pitch report and weather forecast
The Lord’s pitch will probably assist the seamers more than the Trent Bridge pitch did on Thursday. The bigger size of the boundary means the batsmen will have to work hard for the runs.
The forecast says Saturday should be clear with the temperature hovering in the mid to late-20s.
India vs England head to head in ODI
These two teams have played a total of 97 ODIs to date, India winning 53 of those to England’s 39. Two matches have ended in a tie and three have failed to produce a result.
In the ODIs played in England, the home team lead India by 19 to 16 in the head to head.
India vs England probable 11
Alex Hales has been ruled out of the remainder of the ODI series with an injury he picked up while training in the lead-up to the first ODI. Dawid Malan will continue to remain with the squad as cover. England are unlikely to alter their playing XI despite Thursday’s defeat.
Probable England XI: 1 Eoin Morgan (c), 2 Jason Roy, 3 Jonny Bairstow, 4 Joe Root, 5 Jos Buttler (wk), 6 Ben Stokes, 7 Moeen Ali, 8 Liam Plunkett, 9 David Willey, 10 Adil Rashid, 11 Mark Wood
Bhuvneshwar Kumar did not play the first one-dayer because of back stiffness, and if he is passed fit to play the second ODI, he’ll replace either Siddarth Kaul or Umesh Yadav. The rest of the lineup picks itself.
Possible India playing 11: 1 Virat Kohli (c), 2 Rohit Sharma, 3 Shikhar Dhawan, 4 Lokesh Rahul, 5 MS Dhoni (wk), 6 Suresh Raina, 7 Hardik Pandya, 8 Bhuvneshwar Kumar/Siddarth Kaul, 9 Kuldeep Yadav, 10 Yuzvendra Chahal, 11 Umesh Yadav
As aforementioned, England batsmen must overcome the seeming inability to play spin, while the English new-ball bowlers must find a way to get India’s top three out cheaply. Playing at Lord’s, to go with this being a day match, means the toss might not be as much of a factor as it was in the first ODI and in the T20Is, but India look strong and have to be considered the favourite to clinch the series at the Home of Cricket.