World Cup 2019, India Predicted XI against Sri Lanka: Mayank Agarwal set for ODI debut
Team India will look to finish their ICC World Cup 2019 group stage campaign on a winning note when they lock horns against Sri Lanka at Headingley in Leeds on Saturday. ‘The Islanders’ have already been eliminated from the tournament will be playing for pride in their last outing. Having said that, India cannot commit the mistake of taking Sri Lanka lightly as on their day they can get the better of any team. Ask England and they’ll confirm it. As for Virat Kohli and Co, they would look to experiment with their eleven one final time before the semi-finals. Let’s take a look at India’s likely XI for this clash. ((ICC World Cup 2019: Full Coverage))
Vice-captain Rohit Sharma has been in sensational form and has been leading India’s charge with the bat. With four centuries under his belt and 544 runs, Rohit is one of the leading run-getters of the World Cup. India wouldn’t want to rest him and break the continuity as he will have a big role to play in the final stages of the tournament.
Opener Mayank Agarwal is likely to make his ODI and World Cup debut in this match. The team management would look to test him at the top of the order and push KL Rahul at number four again in order to provide more steel to the middle-order. Mayank did well when he was called up for his maiden Test tour in Australia and he will look for a similar performance if given a chance against Sri Lanka.
Skipper Virat Kohli has been among the runs for India and has slammed five fifties in seven outings in the tournament. Kohli would feel he is due of a big score as he hasn’t crossed the three-figure mark in the competition yet. Apart from his batting, Kohli has also been exceptional in the field and led his team from the front.
India’s frail middle-order has been a cause of concern for the team management and KL Rahul could be asked to return to the number four slot. The incoming of Mayank Agarwal could make this idea work as he has been a more than capable opener for ‘India A’. Rahul has had starts in the tournament but hasn’t been able to convert them into big innings yet. He would look for the same against Sri Lanka but from the middle-order.
Middle-order batsman Rishabh Pant’s hard-hitting abilities is enough to keep the opposition on their toes. His batting position can been kept flexible depending upon the situation. His fielding in the out-field remains suspect but it can be ignored considering he has been a stumper all his life.
Wicket-keeper-batsman Mahendra Singh Dhoni will continue to wear the glouves for Team India as he remains an integral part of the team. He may have come under-fire for his slow batting against Afghanistan and not going after the target against England but his experience of playing at the top level is second to none. Dhoni is also a big asset for the bowlers as his suggestions from behind the stumps work more often than not.
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All-rounder Hardik Pandya has been India’s X-factor player in the tournament. Not just he has added quick runs to the totals in the death overs, he has scalped crucial wickets and provided timely breakthroughs as well. Pandya has peaked just as the right time and his form certainly bodes well for the team.
Fast-bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar returned against Bangladesh and showed his importance to this Indian team. Not just he is a wicket-taking bowler but he remains one of India’s best bet in the death overs. India will want him to get back to his best before they play England or New Zealand in the semi-finals.
Pacer Mohammed Shami has been in scintillating wicket-taking form in the tournament. He has scalped 14 wickets in four outings and proved Bhuvi’s injury was a blessing in disguise for the team. His death-over bowling remains suspect but Kohli won’t mind that till the time he is picking wickets.
Leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal has a knack of picking wickets and has scalped 11 so far in the tournament. He has proved to be expensive in the last couple of games against England and Bangladesh respectively and would want to iron out the shortcomings before India’s campaign heads into the semi-finals.
The number one ODI bowler in the world has already played down the prospect of him being rested for this clash. Bumrah has scalped 14 wickets in seven outings and has been one of India’s top performers in the tournament. Not to forget his economy rate, which is among the very best in the competition.