Team India defied expectations by whitewashing New Zealand in the five-match T20I series. However, they have not been able to continue their momentum as Virat Kohli and co. have lost the three-match series before the final match. The home side pulled off their highest successful run chase to win the first ODI and then defended a total of 273 runs in the second ODI to take an unassailable lead in the series.
The top three batsmen of the Indian batting lineup have not provided the team with solid starts. Although Shreyas Iyer has batted splendidly at number 4, the others have not supported him to perfection. KL Rahul played a fine knock in the series opener but the likes of Virat Kohli, Prithvi Shaw and Mayank Agarwal are yet to come to the party.
In the bowling unit, Jasprit Bumrah has been ineffective thus far. Hence, India will look to alter their strategies heading into the third ODI and here is their predicted playing XI.
Prithvi Shaw and Mayank Agarwal will get one last chance to solidify their position in the Indian ODI squad as both the players are likely to lose their place when the regular openers return. Virat Kohli will bat at the number three position with Shreyas Iyer at number four.
Wicket-keeper batsman KL Rahul will retain the number five spot while Manish Pandey may replace Kedar Jadhav in the match squad. Ravindra Jadeja will try to maintain his form after a fifty in the last match.
The team management may want to give Jasprit Bumrah a break as there is an ICC World Test Championship series scheduled to take place later. Mohammed Shami, Shardul Thakur and Navdeep Saini will form the Indian pace attack with Yuzvendra Chahal being the sole spinner of the team.
Predicted playing XI of India for third ODI vs New Zealand: Prithvi Shaw, Mayank Agarwal, Virat Kohli (c), Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul (wk), Manish Pandey, Ravindra Jadeja, Shardul Thakur, Navdeep Saini, Mohammed Shami, Yuzvendra Chahal
Mohammed Shami: After an impressive show in the T20I series, Mohammed Shami will look to replicate those performances in the 50-overs format though he bowled poorly in the first ODI. He was rested for the second game but he will look to trouble the Kiwi batsmen with his pace in the final ODI.
Manish Pandey: The right-handed batsman from Karnataka performed magnificently in the five-match T20I series. Surprisingly, the team management preferred to include Kedar Jadhav in the playing XI ahead of Pandey but after Jadhav's dismal batting performance in Auckland, it is likely that he may lose his place. Manish will try to capitalise on the opportunity that he receives as he has the calibre to play the role of a finisher for India.Published 10 Feb 2020, 18:45 IST