With the ICC 2019 Cricket World Cup just three days away, all teams are on their marks and ready to charge. However, for the Indian cricket team, the wait for action will continue till June 5 when they take on South Africa in their opening encounter. But the men-in-blue have one more match where they can try out their combinations and give some exposure to their players before the action commences on May 30. India's second and last warm-up game, against Bangladesh, takes place on May 28 at Cardiff in Wales.
When and where to watch
The match commences at 10:30 AM local time and 3 PM IST. The live telecast of the match would be provided by Star Sports 1, Star Sports 1 Hindi, Star Sports Select 1, Star Sports 1 HD, Star Sports 1 Hindi HD and Star Sports Select 1 HD. Live streaming of the match would be available on Hotstar platform for online viewers.
While most Indian players and experts have shrugged off the team's loss to New Zealand in their first warm-up match, the situation would look rather grim if they lose against Bangladesh also. Let's not forget that this Indian team lost its last ODI series – against Australia at home – and hence, needs some upliftment to go into the big event with confidence.
One real problem they faced against the Black Caps was the inability of their batsmen to deal with the moving ball. To some extent, this can be attributed to their experience of having spent the last two months playing in the IPL where the ball hardly moves and the batsmen have to play their shots. Still, the roots of the problem go far beyond the last season of the T20 league. It would be interesting to see how the Indian batsmen bat in this match if there are clouds around and their turn comes first.
There is also the big question of who should bat at no. 4 that is vexing the Indian team. KL Rahul failed against the Kiwis. If he is given another opportunity and fails again, it would create some headache for the Indian team management. However, there is also the possibility of some experimentation. Vijay Shankar could be tried in that place or even MS Dhoni. Kedar Jadhav may also be in the running. So, keep your eyes peeled for who comes out to bat for India after the fall of second wicket.
Lastly, the Indian wrist-spin twins, Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal, didn't have a great IPL. Even against New Zealand, they were tackled easily by the experienced duo of Ross Taylor and Kane Williamson. If both endure another poor game against Bangladesh, it could be a major concern for India. These two have been the cornerstone of India's success in ODI cricket over the last three years and their neutralisation will leave team's plans looking redundant. A good performance is badly needed.
Bangladesh have been doing well in recent times and their dominant performance against West Indies and Ireland in a tri-series shows that they are serious contenders this time and not just a team making up the numbers. Having their first warm-up match abandoned due to rain has denied them a great opportunity. This match would be extremely crucial for testing all their players and plans in England.
If there are no clouds, it could turn out to be a run fest with India likely to emerge winners. However, overcast conditions would create trouble for both teams and in that scenario also, India are likely to be triumphant due to presence of bowlers like Mohammad Shami and Bhuvneshwar Kumar. But it would be a huge mistake for the men-in-blue to take the Tigers lightly. Their bowlers have shown rapid improvement under the guidance of Courtney Walsh and could pose a serious challenge.