Virat Kohli India Denesh Ramdin West Indies
Virat Kohli will hope to continue his good batting form while handling captaincy duties in the ODI series against Sri LankaPal Pillai/Sportzpics/BCCI

The most important thing with a World Cup looming large is to have a settled lineup, and some potent bench strength. India and Sri Lanka will look to do just that when the two teams clash in a five-match ODI series as preparations for the ICC World Cup in Australia and New Zealand continue in earnest.

MS Dhoni will be the man missing from the India lineup for this ODI series against familiar faces in Sri Lanka, and it will be interesting to see just how well Virat Kohli copes as captain.

Kohli is seen as the heir to Dhoni's captaincy throne in the future, but after getting into some terrific form with the bat against the West Indies, India will hope captaincy does not burden the prolific right-hander, even if he has captained the country quite a few times in the past.

India are at their best and most dangerous when Kohli is scoring runs, and after that terrific century in the 4th ODI – which eventually turned out to be the final match of the India vs West Indies series – the 25-year-old will want to continue piling on the runs.

While the spotlight will be on Kohli and his captaincy, with Dhoni rested for the first three ODIs, there will also be plenty of eyes on the India bowling lineup. The home team will be without two of their key bowlers in Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Mohammed Shami, with the former rested and the latter ruled out through injury.

It will be up to the likes of Varun Aaron, Dhawal Kulkarni, Umesh Yadav and the experienced Ishant Sharma to take up the fast bowling mantle in their absence.

India's spin department wears a settled look with R Ashwin coming back into the side after he was rested for the West Indies ODIs, while Ravindra Jadeja will be a potent weapon again. Akshar Patel has done well when given a chance and Amit Mishra has the capabilities to pick up wickets as well.

The batting of the home side, even without the master finisher in Dhoni, should be the strength, and if the likes of Ajinkya Rahane, Shikhar Dhawan and Suresh Raina give Kohli good support in the middle, then runs should flow.

At the other end, there is Sri Lanka, also missing a couple of key bowlers in the shape of Rangana Herath and Lasith Malinga.

The players are clearly not amused at having to play an ODI series away from home at such short notice, but they will look at the one-day internationals as an opportunity to gain some more match practice, experience and fire out the weaknesses, especially since they are playing against such strong opposition in India, the defending world champions in the 50-over format.

"If some of the other players in our batting lineup except the two senior players and the captain can take up the burden, we will do better," Sri Lanka coach Marvan Atapattu was quoted as saying by ESPNCricinfo when asked about what he expects from this five-match ODI series.

"It's easy for me to say all areas but specifically if we can get up to better level in terms of fielding that will be good. Of course bowling is another area which demands a lot of skill these days with all the restrictions."

Get the India vs Sri Lanka 1st ODI Live Streaming Information HERE

Squads: India: Virat Kohli (capt), Ajinkya Rahane, Shikhar Dhawan, Murali Vijay, Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, Wriddhiman Saha, Ravindra Jadeja, Akshar Patel, R Ashwin, Amit Mishra, Umesh Yadav, Ishant Sharma, Varun Aaron, Dhawal Kulkarni.

Sri Lanka: Angelo Mathews (capt), Tillakaratne Dilshan, Kusal Perera, Mahela Jayawardene, Kumar Sangakkara, Upul Tharanga, Chaturanga De Silva, Niroshan Dickwella, Seekkuge Prasanna, Ashan Priyanjan, Thisara Perera, Nuwan Kulasekara, Lahiru Gamage, Dhammika Prasad, Suraj Randiv.