Team India would look to make amends11 March 2020 / SkyBook365 Cricket Editors Team
Hardik Pandya and Bhuvneswar Kumar will make a comeback in the team.
Afghanistan must be hurting. Playing hosts to West Indies in their adopted home in India, their ODI campaign went so badly that the team's losing streak in the format extended to 12 by the end of the series. There's a mismatch in the philosophy of their batting (defensive) and bowling (attacking) units, and that gulf appears to have become deeper after the recent integration of a few young batsmen in the squad. Afghanistan walk into the three-match T20I series after being swept aside 0-3 in the ODI series, stretching a wretched run in the 50-over format to 12 consecutive games. Their arrival of their favourite format should offer some respite, but here too, the stats don't paint a pretty picture. They haven't beaten the West Indies in T20Is since 2016 and have since lost three consecutive matches in 2017 in the Caribbean. But T20Is are Afghanistan's best format. With a stockpile of mystery spinners and a batting unit that goes deep (if not always big) Afghanistan have made oppositions, especially when in the subcontinent, wary.
Afghanistan have been far from the side they can be. In the tri-series in Bangladesh, even Zimbabwe managed to squeeze past the Rashid Khan-led side before the washout in the final. Lack of runs hurt Afghanistan in the ODI series and it's the batsmen who will have to lead the resurgence. In the first two ODIs, they scored 194 and 200, which, given the conditions, were unacceptable. They did show signs of getting their act together in the final ODI before Shai Hope helped West Indies complete the series white-wash. As sides look to build towards the ICC T20 World Cup in Australia next year, they'll have to stop relying on their bowlers - especially spinners - to always do the job. West Indies, on the other hand, have always liked the shortest format and have the spunk to outplay any opposition on their day. It's the consistency they'll look to achieve as they try and discover their team balance.
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