India look to make merry against under-cooked Sri Lanka

  • MVL Manikantan, Hindustan Times, Ahmedabad
  • Updated: Nov 06, 2014 02:07 IST

While doubts remain over the composition of the bowling attack, India's batsmen oozed confidence ahead of the second one-day international against Sri Lanka on Thursday.

The pitch at the Sardar Patel Stadium has been favourable to batsmen, and the opportunity will be used by the Virat Kohli-led side.

The series has given the right platform to the batsmen to get more match practice ahead of the tour to Australia, which is followed by the World Cup.

The first ODI saw India make 363, and given the momentum more 300-plus scores can be expected. The conditions will be different but a big victory will set the tone for the team when it travels Down Under.

The batsmen more or less decided, it is form that will be crucial. As the team practiced on Wednesday, the top-order batsmen faced an assortment of bowlers apart from an extended throw-down session.

Shikhar Dhawan and Ajinkya Rahane have been opening the innings since England and complement each other's style. Virat is slowly finding the consistency that evaded him in England. The knocks of 127 and 62 in the final two ODIs against West Indies signalled a turnaround while Suresh Raina has clinched the No. 4 spot.

"The batting has come together nicely, it's a gradual process and the guys are more comfortable batting in their spots. The idea of this series is to try different people at different positions and see how they react to those situations," said Virat, hinting at another experiment.

The stand-in skipper also confirmed the team's focus on the quadrennial event. "It's not like neglecting the fact that we have to win the games. It's obviously keeping in mind that those guys are good enough to play in those positions and able to win games for us. It's about infusing confidence into people, so this is just a phase leading to the World Cup," said Virat.

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