With the Test and T20I series between India and England done and dusted, the caravan moves to Pune for the three-match ODI series starting March 23 at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium. Both sides will look to give their best shot with Cricket World Cup Super League points on offer as well which both sides will want to pick up as they look to ensure their qualification for that 2023 tournament. England currently sit third on the table while India, who have played three games less, are in tenth place.
India are missing some of their first-choice players in Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammad Shami, and Ravindra Jadeja. As a result, Virat Kohli & Co have named a couple of debutants in their squad while recalling a few cricketers to create a pool of cricketers. Suryakumar Yadav and Krunal Pandya could be in line for their ODI debuts while T Natarajan and Mohammed Siraj may get the chance to build on their solitary caps.
The Indian skipper has confirmed that Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan will start as openers in the first ODI. It will be interesting to see how they accommodate KL Rahul in the middle-order now that Rishabh Pant is all set to take his place back in the playing XI.
England are set to give opportunities to a number of players who did not feature in the T20I series. With Joe Root, Chris Woakes, and Jofra Archer missing for reasons of rest and injury, there will be chances for Liam Livingstone, Sam Billings, and Reece Topley to show what they can do. All eyes will be on ace all-rounder Ben Stokes, who had mild T20I series.
India vs England 2021: 1st ODI on March 23 at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Pune from1:30PM IST
Match Prediction – Who will win the match?
Both India and England have had mixed outings in recent times. England beat Ireland 2-1 last summer but then lost to Australia later in the season, their first ODI series defeat since they were beaten in India in 2017. India have also struggled of late, losing their last two ODI series. They were whitewashed by New Zealand last February and then also lost 2-1 to Australia late last year.
The Men in Blues have not played an ODI in Pune since October 2018 when they lost to West Indies. They fared better the only time they have played England at the MCA Stadium, however, defeating them by three wickets in the 2017 series.
Going into the series oozing with confidence, India will start as the favourites to go 1-0 up in the three-match series.