File photo of Indian cricketers© AFP
India cantered to an easy win over the West Indies in the opening game of the three-match ODI series on Sunday in Ahmedabad. The hosts proved to be just too good on the day for the visitors with spinners Yuzvendra Chahal and Washington Sundar playing a starring role. The duo took seven wickets between them, creating all sorts of problems for the West Indian batters. While it was smooth sailing for India in the opening ODI, looking forward to the 2023 ODI World Cup at home, India have one problem in particular that will be making the team management a bit nervous.
Playing at home, Indian bowlers, pacers in particular, have lacked the cutting edge to make an impact in the first 10 overs of an ODI.
The stats make for a grim reading and this problem will need to be addressed quickly.
In the first ODI against the Windies, Mohammed Siraj provided India the early breakthrough by removing Shai Hope. Shockingly, this was India’s only 12th wicket in the powerplays since 2020 in ODIs.
And it was only the 4th instance that Indian bowlers have managed to pick a wicket inside the first 10 overs in seven ODIs at home.
Apart from the lack of wickets, Indian bowlers have also failed to keep the opposition’s scoring rate down in the first 10 overs of ODIs at home.
India’s economy rate of 6.40 in ODIs at home is the worst among all the teams since 2020 that have played a minimum of five matches in home conditions.
India, no doubt, have a super-strong batting lineup, but if they are to lift the ODI World Cup trophy in 2023, the bowling will need to come together as well.
India are next in action on Wednesday when they take on the West Indies in the second ODI. The series culminates with the final ODI on Friday.
The ODI series will be followed by a three-match T20I series that begins on February 16 at Eden Gardens in Kolkata.
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