Intercontinental Cup 2018 Final: India vs Kenya, Probable XI
After having lost out to a young and voraciously attacking New Zealand in their last fixture a couple of days ago, the Blue Tigers will be determined to give it all they have got to clinch that trophy in the Intercontinental Cup finale tonight. The match is set to kick off at the Mumbai Sports Complex in Andheri at 8:00 PM, and will be televised on the Star Sports Network and Hotstar.
While Kenya battled a young Chinese Taipei last night in order to overpower New Zealand to seal the spot in the finale of the tournament, India, thanks to their successive whopping wins against Chinese Taipei and Kenya earlier in the competition, was ahead on head-to-head basis to confirm their spot in tonight’s fixture.
India Coach Stephen Constantine had his first team players sit out in the game against New Zealand and went on to make as many as seven substitutions in his previous fixture against the All Whites. However, a final means business and the fans can expect the starting eleven to include the first-choice names of the squad. After having played an oppressing Kenyan side, Constantine will be focusing on strengthening his defensive options as the likes of Sandesh Jhingan and Anas Edathodika are expected to make a return to the first eleven.
The midfield duo comprising Anirudh Thapa and Pronoy Haldar has been lethal for team India and have been praised by their Coach as well as fans all around the country. Their stability and vision have played an integral role in India’s path to the final stage of the competition. Linking up with wingers and making space in those danger zones is something the pair have done throughout India’s Intercontinental Cup campaign and Constantine will be counting on the pair to recreate the magic.
India Probable XI: Gurpreet; Kotal, Jhingan, Anas, Bose; Thapa, Haldar; Udanta, Sunil Narzary; Jeje
After a 3-0 thrashing against India in the competition earlier on, Kenya coach Sebastien Migne will be looking to make some significant tactical changes in his plan to clinch victory against Sunil Chhetri and co. The team from the African Confederation will be determined to perform well tonight after they beat Chinese Taipei with a score line of 4-0.
While goalkeeper, Patrick Matasi displayed high resilience against the Indians the last time around, the Kenyan team certainly needs to better their defensive game. Their backline seemed unorganized and lacked communication which allowed India to charge inside the box and capitalise three times during the ninety minutes.
Kenya Probable XI: Patrick Matasi (GK) ; Jockins, Kibwage, Musa, Erick ; Omoto, Clifton, Duncan ; Makwata, Ochieng, Mutamba
India 3 - 0 Kenya
The Men in Blue will be going in as the favourites to win this contest. Fans will be filling up the stands in large numbers to back the home side. The Blue Pilgrims have a huge banner prepared for tonight's fixture and the kind of reception and support Chhetri and team have received has been exceptional. The Indian Captain has been a supreme asset for his team and has been on a goal-scoring rampage throughout the competition. Also, one should not bet against the #11 scoring tonight.
Let us hear your predictions for the final tonight in the comments section below!