After a resounding victory for India in Hyderabad courtesy a Virat Kohli special, the two teams will now head to Trivandrum. India and West Indies have met each other 15 times across all T20Is. India have the upper hand here having won nine of these encounters. In the last five T20Is, the hosts have been completely dominant winning all five encounters. In India, these two teams have met five times, where the scoreline again reads 4-1 in India’s favour.
Ground Details and Team Combination
There has been only one international T20 game played in Trivandrum, a rain-shortened affair against New Zealand back in 2017. A lot of domestic cricket has been staged at this venue in recent times though. Statistics suggest that bowlers have enjoyed their time of it at this ground. In domestic T20 games since the start of 2018, the average runs per wicket at this ground reads a low 17.9 while bowlers have picked a wicket every 15.6 deliveries, the lowest for any ground in India. The batsmen have also scored runs at a moderate run rate of 6.9 during the aforementioned time period. Going by recent numbers at the stadium, we can expect bowlers to have a slight edge over their batting counterparts.
On the bowling front, pacers have had a slight edge over the spinners at this venue. In 14 T20 games since the start of 2018, fast bowlers have returned a wicket every 15.6 deliveries as compared to 19.7 by spinners.
Left-arm pacers have been the most effective breed here, having struck every 14.1 balls while leg-spinners and right-arm pacers are also not too far behind. Sheldon Cottrell is the lone left-arm pacer across the two sides and could be a decent pick in these conditions. Someone like Yuzvendra Chahal and Deepak Chahar might also do a fine job here. Chahar has taken 9 wickets in the last 3 matches in this ground and might be effective in the conditions.
A combination of five frontline batsman including the wicket-keeper, three all-rounders, one spinner and two seamers might be an ideal make of your side.
West Indies might just have woken up the beast and that is never a good thing. Virat Kohli was just not able to get going in Hyderabad. Then something snapped and Kohli looked the unstoppable giant he has known to be on the international circuit. What followed was an array of breath-taking strokes as he lit up Hyderabad. West Indies is one of Kohli’s favourite opposition. He has 412 runs against them in nine innings at an average of 58.56 which includes four half-centuries. In case he gets set, Trivandrum might be in for another Kohli fest.
That the West Indians struggle against leg-spinners is well documented. It was visible in the first Hyderabad T20 as well where Yuzvendra Chahal looked like the toughest to pick amongst all Indian bowlers. Having become the joint leading wicket-taker for India in T20 Internationals, Chahal will be high on confidence and will want to leave a greater impact come Sunday.
No other player has played more T20 matches this year than Kieron Pollard and he has been in consistent form all through both with bat and ball. In 57 outings, Pollard has 1336 runs at an average of 35.16 and a strike-rate of 147.9. He looked in good touch in the first game cracking 37 in quick time while also returning a wicket. With a wealth of experience, Pollard can be a key X-factor for West Indies and your side.
Deepak Chahar has been exemplary in the shortest format of the game this year. He recorded the best-ever figures in T20I history against Bangladesh last month and in general, just looks unstoppable. While he did not have the best of times in the first game, he has been in good form this year. Moreover, his record at this venue is remarkable. In the recently-concluded Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 tournament, Chahar picked up 9 wickets in three outings for Rajasthan striking every 7.3 balls. If he can get his line right early on, Chahar could really prove to be a handful on this surface.
It is expected to be partly cloudy on Friday, however, chances of rain are pretty minimal. The temperature will hover around the early 30-degree mark on average through the evening. It is going to be humid in Trivandrum on Sunday so dew might come into play as the night progresses.
Suggested FanFight Team:
KL Rahul, Virat Kohli (c), Evin Lewis, Shreyas Iyer, Nicholas Pooran (wk), Kieron Pollard (vc), Jason Holder, Ravindra Jadeja, Sheldon Cottrell, Yuzvendra Chahal, Deepak Chahar