India drew first blood in the ODI series with England at Nottingham on Thursday and when the two sides meet at Lord’s on Saturday the tourists have the first of two chances to claim the overall series.
England head to HQ knowing they have to win the match to force a decider in Leeds on Tuesday. If they lose then the ODI series will be heading the same way that the T20 one did which should guarantee an excellent game of cricket here.
Although losing is never a good thing, the positive England have from the loss in the first game of the series is that they don’t need to look too deep to work out where they went wrong. If they are going to turn this series around then quite simply they are going to have to find out a way to play the spinners that India offer.
They are going to need to bowl better than they did at Trent Bridge too but to be fair to the bowlers they knew they were defending nothing against a gun batting line up on a roasting hot day so I’m happy to let them off. That said, in what is a must-win match for them they are going to have to turn up and be counted here.
If India had written a script for the perfect match at Trent Bridge we pretty much saw it played out on the field too. They were solid with the ball to begin with and then when the spinners got to work they were always in control. It might be that the most pleasing part of their performance in Nottingham was the ease in which they chased down a moderate total.
India will be looking for a repeat performance in this match and when you factor in that most touring sides are inspired by Lord’s and tend to raise their game there they will be extremely confident of getting it too. Were that to happen they may well claim the series before they get to Leeds next week.
England never panic after a defeat so I would expect them to be unchanged unless they want to rotate their seam bowlers given the quick proximity between this match and the previous one. Alex Hales has been ruled out of the series.
India have no need to make any changes either but if Bhuvneshwar Kumar is back he could come in for Siddarth Kaul although it might be that he is saved until Tuesday if India were not to secure the series here.
There have been 60 ODIs on this ground and only one of them has had more than the 616.5 runs which the total match runs line is for this game. That was the NatWest final between these two 16 years ago but I’m not convinced we are going to see this line covered here either.
Trent Bridge is probably the best batting wicket in the country right now and there was not even 570 runs there and quite simply I don’t think England can score the number of runs needed for this line to cover. I say that for two reasons. Firstly they just have no answer to Kuldeep Yadav right now and secondly Alex Hales is a big miss, especially with Joe Root in no form whatsoever. India can be relied upon to restrict England to a score of 300 or below once again and if they are setting a total they are terrible at that and on a morning start with a bit of juice in the wicket England might get some early rewards to derail them. This line feels a little high, potentially off the back of the numbers England were putting up against Australia earlier in the summer. They’re not playing Australia here though.
WON – Back Under 616.5 runs for a 4/10 stake at 1.83 with TLCBet