India vs England 2nd ODI: No captain Morgan in do-or-die match, pressure on tourists

Liam Livingstone set for ODI debut while India mull over the correct replacement for Shreyas Iyer - it could be either Suryakumar Yadav or Rishabh Pant who didn't play the opener.

Shikhar Dhawan and K.L. Rahul complete a run as Ben Stokes walks back during the first ODI in Pune.   -  REUTERS

Over the last two months, twice in as many formats has India come back with a bang to walk away with the series, first in Tests followed by T20Is. On Friday, India will have a chance to seal the ODI series and World champion England will be desperate to keep it alive.

England has plenty to ponder in terms of the availability of its key batsmen ahead of the game at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium.

Captain Eoin Morgan has been ruled out of the remaining two ODIs while Sam Billings will be unavailable for selection for Friday’s game. While Morgan batted despite splitting his webbing trying to stop a ball in the series-opener, Billings suffered a shoulder injury while fielding.

The England team management, while releasing an update on the second ODI, confirmed on Thursday evening that Liam Livingstone will make his ODI debut. Dawid Malan who was part of the England contingent as a cover, has been drafted into the squad in place of Morgan and will be available for selection.

READ| The story of two debutants starring Krunal Pandya, Prasidh Krishna

India, on the other hand, has plenty of options to replace injured Shreyas Iyer.

Having suffered a shoulder injury on Tuesday, an Indian team spokesperson confirmed that the batsman has been “ruled of the remainder of the series”.

India will thus have to decide whether to replace him with left-handed Rishabh Pant or hand Suryakumar Yadav an ODI debut. Both Pant and Surya have been in fine form and will be hoping to get some game-time.

Kuldeep Yadav, who spent most of the last four months on the bench, deserves to be given a longer rope. The chinaman may need some time to rediscover the mojo.

READ| Shreyas Iyer ruled out of India vs England ODI series, doubtful for IPL 2021

For two years before the COVID-19 outbreak, Kuldeep and Yuzvendra Chahal had emerged as a lethal spin combination in white-ball cricket. But with Kuldeep losing zing – loss of confidence and loss of pace, something that works against a spinner in modern-day cricket – he has moved south in the preferred spinners’ list.

The second ODI could be a make-or-break opportunity for Kuldeep.

Ahead of the series, there were questions on the context of three one-dayers in a T20 World Cup year, but if India triumphs, it will snatch the No. 1 ODI ranking from England.

The teams (from):

INDIA: Virat Kohli (Capt.), Rohit Sharma (Vice-capt.), Shikhar Dhawan, Shubman Gill, Suryakumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Rishabh Pant (w.k.), KL Rahul (w.k.), Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Krunal Pandya, Washington Sundar, T. Natarajan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Siraj, Prasidh Krishna, Shardul Thakur.

ENGLAND: Jos Buttler (c)(w.k.), Jonny Bairstow (w.k.), Sam Billings (w.k.), Moeen Ali, Sam Curran, Tom Curran, Liam Livingstone, Matt Parkinson, Adil Rashid, Jason Roy, Ben Stokes, Reece Topley, Mark Wood, Dawid Malan.

The match starts at 1.30 p.m.

Live on Star Sports