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Saturday, March 07, 2015

2015 World Cup - India are tested by West Indies

The Indian team wanted a stiffer test after their previous match against UAE. The West Indies team was well-relaxed before their match against India at Perth. Probably too well-relaxed, one thinks. The Indian team after the match had not tested their Bowling Plan B at all - what happens if one of their key bowlers get hit? How will Suresh Raina fare with the ball against well-set batsmen? No, not this day. They leave Australian shores after a long while for two matches in New Zealand but with their confidence sky-high.

The Indian captain had a good workout in the middle - he had to shepherd a chase that was not steep in terms of asking rate but could have been tricky with wickets lost. The top-order batsmen suffered a collapse but this is welcome in the early league matches rather than the vital knock-out ones. Also, the bouncy pitches are going to say good-bye to the tournament soon. It will be more of the MCG's and SCG's, if not the New Zealand turf for the Indian team next! 

Yes, couple of catches as well as half-chances were dropped. The complacency seems to be rearing its head but what the Indian team now needs is for their batsmen to flex their muscles after batting first - post a total of 350-400 in the next two matches and boost their Net Run Rate, even if it is not necessary. They have played very similar to the other group leader (New Zealand) so far. The bowling outshining the batsmen with one tricky low chase in the campaign - in fact, NZ had two (Australia and Scotland).

It might be worthwhile to give Shami and Ashwin a rest to try out Bhuvi and Axar for the next phases. Dhoni could skip one match to watch the team's performance but dont think this will happen.
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