Big picture: Rain threat in Colombo
Rahul hasn’t played in an ODI since March while Bumrah hasn’t bowled in one since July. And in order to accommodate Rahul in the XI, India’s team management might have to bench Ishan Kishan, who has reeled off four half-centuries in his last four innings in the format. Decisions, decisions.
For the duration play was possible in Pallekele, India’s batters and Pakistan’s attack teased a gripping contest. There could be more of the same in Colombo or perhaps just rain across two days.
India WWLWL (last five completed ODIs, most recent first)Pakistan WWWWW
In the spotlight: KL Rahul and Naseem Shah
After spending four months on the sidelines, KL Rahul is set to slot back into India’s ODI XI. Kishan has shaken things up in the recent past and has grabbed almost every opportunity, but Rahul has got the vote of confidence from the selectors and the team management. At a recent press conference, India’s captain Rohit Sharma saw the possibility of having both Rahul and Kishan in the XI, but that appears unlikely. It will be Rahul vs Kishan in the lead-up to the World Cup. Sunday’s fixture against Pakistan could well be Rahul’s first chance to prove his fitness and form.
Team news: Bumrah is back
India (probable): 1 Shubman Gill, 2 Rohit Sharma (capt), 3 Virat Kohli, 4 Shreyas Iyer, 5 KL Rahul (wk), 6 Hardik Pandya, 7 Ravindra Jadeja, 8 Shardul Thakur, 9 Kuldeep Yadav, 10 Jasprit Bumrah, 11 Mohammed Siraj
Pakistan (probable): 1 Fakhar Zaman, 2 Imam-ul-Haq, 3 Babar Azam (capt), 4 Mohammad Rizwan (wk), 5 Agha Salman, 6 Iftikhar Ahmed, 7 Shadab Khan, 8 Mohammad Nawaz/Faheem Ashraf, 9 Shaheen Shah Afridi, 10 Naseem Shah, 11 Haris Rauf
“They are very different fast bowlers and they have their own specialities. Shaheen gets the ball to swing a lot. Naseem is all about pace and likes help from the wicket. They present different challenges in different conditions.Shubman Gill on the threat posed by Pakistan’s quicks
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