India and West Indies will lock horns in the first of the 3-match T20 series. Team India ended an impressive World Cup campaign on a rather disappointing note with the heartbreaking semi-final exit.
India's longstanding middle-order problem resurfaced in the crucial semi-final encounter and thus all eyes will be on the likes of Shreyas Iyer and Manish Pandey who will audition for the middle-order spots.
While India is going with a full-strength batting line-up, the bowling looks a little thin. With T20 regulars Jasprit Bumrah, Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav rested for the series, the big-hitting West Indies batsmen will surely target the inexperienced Indian bowling attack.
Even though West Indies will be without Chris Gayle, who is participating in the Canada GT20, they have enough firepower to dismantle India's bowling attack. Shimron Hetmyer, Nicholas Pooran, Evin Lewis are extremely dangerous in the T20 format. The return of veteran T20 players, Sunil Narine and Kieron Pollard to the T20 squad will further strengthen the T20 champions.
Players to watch out for
Rahul Chahar has risen to the ranks quite swiftly. Chahar had a stellar IPL season with the Mumbai Indians and contributed heavily to the team's title victory. He followed it up with an impressive performance for India A which paved way for his selection in the Indian T20 side. The youngster will have his work cut out against the Windies batsmen.
Nicholas Pooran played some eye-catching innings in the World Cup. The swashbuckling wicket-keeper batsman, who is considered to be one of the most talented players in West Indies, will look to extend his purple patch against India.
Who will win the match?
West Indies might have had a disappointing World Cup campaign but they are a force to reckon with in T20s. Considering India's depleted bowling and West Indies' might as a batting unit, West Indies will start as favorites in this encounter.