World Cup 2019: One brave change India must make for the semi-final against New Zealand
India will face New Zealand in the first semifinal of the Cricket World Cup 2019 at Old Trafford Cricket Ground, Manchester. The Men in Blue have topped the league table by winning seven out of the nine matches played by them while Newzealand came fourth by accumulating seven points.
Virat Kohli's team have enjoyed an edge over their semi-final opponents in recent history but New Zealand came out as comfortable winners in the warm-up match. On the other hand, New Zealand have lost their last three matches against Pakistan, Australia and England , which obviously causes a point of concern for the Black caps.
While it's true that Australia's latest defeat against South-Africa helped the Men in Blue, India's only defeat came against England. Despite being the most dominant team in the World Cup so far, there are no room for errors and Virat Kohli and co. will be wise not to make any mistakes.
India inflicted a crushing defeat to Sri Lanka in their last league fixture where they won by seven wickets. The top order looks to be in great form and the bowling led by Jasprit Bumrah seems to be top notch. Considering the overall form, it goes without saying India are favourites going into the tie.
But like any sport, Cricket is unpredictable. The Men in Blue might rethink their combination to get the best of starting XI against New Zealand. Without further ado, here is the one change India must make in the semi-finals.
Mohammed Shami in for Ravindra Jadeja
The Indian team management decided to drop in-form pacer Mohammed Shami for Bhuvneshwar Kumar against Sri-Lanka. Shami has taken 14 wickets in the four matches he played and has been effective in breaking up threatening partnerships.
Alongside Bumrah, Shami has played a major part in changing the direction of the match towards India's way. India might rethink their choices as Shami can be a game changer on his day and he has been enjoying a stellar tournament so far.
Moreover, It is crystal clear that the move didn't work out as Bhuvneshwar had the figure of 1/73. Considering the bounce on the pitch and the initial good work done by Bhuvneshwar in the initial matches, India might opt for three pacers in Manchester against New-Zealand.
Ravindra Jadeja provides an extra-option in the bowling as well as in the batting line-up but leaving out an in form pacer makes no sense.
Jadeja has been superb when he was brought in for fielding but his batting form is not up to the mark. A partnership breaker like Shami can make the difference, which is why the team management should include the pacer in the starting XI.
Also read – World cup winners list