ODI series preview: England v India

England

The last time India and England played a Test series, prior to the current tour, in 2013 in India, England won by one Test. They then went and lost the following ODIs by a four-one margin. Will history repeat?

The last time India and England played a Test series, prior to the current tour, in 2013 in India, England won by one Test. They then went and lost the following ODIs by a four-one margin. Will history repeat?

India were beyond abject in the latter half of the Test series this time, and lost the series three-one, with England roaring back from a defeat at Lord's to win the final game with two days to spare.

So the hosts go into the ODI series with a boost in confidence, despite winning just two of their last 10 encounters. They've named a strong side for the five games, including everyone's favourite opener Alex Hales, who is in line for an ODI debut.

With both Alastair Cook and Ian Bell regaining slight form thanks to some dire Indian bowling, the question to ask is who, if anyone, will make way for Hales at the top of the order. Bell seems the likely candidate to drop a spot or two.

The fire power in the side is significant, with Jos Buttler and Eoin Morgan available, as well as Gary Ballance and Joe Root in superb form, coming out of the Test series as the highest run-getters.

Paceman Stuart Broad is the main notable absence, unless you're an enraged Ravi Bopara fan, as his knee requires rest before surgery on 4 September. As such, Steve Finn is back in the side, with a real chance of playing for the first time since his Ashes exit.

Harry Gurney, Chris Jordan and Ben Stokes add additional pace and batting options, while the spin roles have been handed to James Tredwell and Moeen Ali, who impressed in the latter stages of the Test series.

India are traditionally superior in this format, as statistics show, but this time they've been hammered to within inches of their lives, and may not be ready to fight back again. They also have Ravi Shastri breathing over their shoulders, watching every move.

Still, Virat Kohli's half century in the tour match against Middlesex was welcome news, as he averaged just 13 in the Tests and his failure became the team's. If he can find form in time, there might be light in the distance.

A big worry though is opener Shikhar Dhawan, who was dropped for the last two Tests due to a lack of runs, and he failed to capitalise at Lord's against a county attack, though whether they'll risk leaving him out is the question.

Bowling-wise, India don't have Ishant Sharma in this squad, despite his doing well in the Tests, but instead have Umesh Yadav back to join Mohammed Shami and Bhuvneshwar Kumar, the latter of whom was their best player in the Tests.

<b>Key Men</b><br>For the hosts, we'll put some dosh on wicketkeeper Jos Buttler being star of the show. Having made his Test debut recently, and scoring two half tons in two games, he's in good nick, and that's not even his best format.

For India, skipper MS Dhoni will again be vital, especially if his top order continues to fail. He scored a string of futile halt tons in the Tests, and will hope his experience in these conditions will work out in his favour this time.

<b>Last Five Head-To-Head Results</b><br>2013 Champs Trophy: India won by five wickets in Birmingham<br>2013 Fifth ODI: England won by seven wickets in Dharamsala<br>2013 Fourth ODI: India won by five wickets in Mohali<br>2013 Third ODI: India won by seven wickets in Ranchi<br>2013 Second ODI: India won by 127 runs in Kochi

<b>Squads</b><br><i>England</i>: Alastair Cook (capt), Moeen Ali, James Anderson, Gary Ballance, Ian Bell, Jos Buttler, Steven Finn, Harry Gurney, Alex Hales, Chris Jordan, Eoin Morgan, Joe Root, Ben Stokes, James Tredwell, Chris Woakes

<i>India</i>: MS Dhoni, Virat Kohli, Ravi Ashwin, Stuart Binny, Shikhar Dhawan, Ravi Jadeja, Dhawal Kulkarni, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammad Shami, Ajinkya Rahane, Suresh Raina, Ambhati Rayudu, Sanju Samson, Karm Sharma, Mohit Sharma, Rohit Sharma, Umesh Yadav

<b>Fixtures</b><br>First ODI: 25 August in Bristol<br>Second ODI: 27 August in Cardiff<br>Third ODI: 30 August in Nottingham<br>Fourth ODI: 2 September in Birmingham<br>Fifth ODI: 5 September in Leeds

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