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India vs Sri Lanka 2017: Virat Kohli Hints at Sticking With Same XI For Pallekele ODI

Cricketnext Staff | Updated: August 24, 2017, 12:58 PM IST
India vs Sri Lanka 2017: Virat Kohli Hints at Sticking With Same XI For Pallekele ODI

File image of Indian cricket team in action in an ODI versus Sri Lanka. (Getty Images)

New Delhi: There is an old adage which says that — 'one cannot fix what is not broken'. And the same applies for the Indian cricket team who are on a roll in the ongoing series in Sri Lanka.

The 'Men In Blue' comprehensively beat the hosts by 9 wickets in the first ODI and skipper Virat Kohli feels that the team is working like an well-oiled machine and there is no need of tinkering with the squad for the second match.

"The wicket in Pallekele is similar to Dambulla. I don’t see any reason to change team just after one game but everything and any combination is possible," said Kohli on the eve of the match.

As such, it is tough to foresee any changes to the Indian playing XI. Only one out of five games has been played yet, and even in West Indies, Kohli resisted the urge to chop and change too much.

It will be interesting if Kohli shuffles his batting order a bit to give KL Rahul and Kedar Jadhav, some batting time considering the inept Sri Lankan bowling which has failed to get India out.

Kohli also backed MS Dhoni ahead of the match and said that a string of limited overs matches in the next three months will enable the former skipper get some momentum and consistency going his way.

"This coming season gives us an opportunity to define roles for players and give them time to execute it so that for the World Cup, we know exactly what one player needs to do in certain situations," Kohli told mediapersons ahead of second ODI.

"And it helps someone like MS also because he doesn't play Test cricket anymore. This long streak of matches will help him be in touch with the international games, find some momentum and stick to it," Kohli added.

At Dambulla, India didn't prefer to go in with either two leg-spinners or two left-arm spinners, thus forming the Chahal-Patel's orthodox leg break-left arm spin combination.

"It was a case of having two left-arm spinners that led us not playing Kuldeep in the first game. Axar was favoured more than Kuldeep from the point of view that he bats quite well and he is a gun (great) in the field also. Kuldeep has got opportunities in the past," he said.

"(Yuzvendra) Chahal and Axar are guys who haven't got many opportunities so we want to test them out. It's all about giving opportunities to people which we feel will not hamper our plans in any way and at the same time, it's about giving them exposure at international cricket," he further added.

But Kuldeep very much remains in thick of things.

"Kuldeep remains in the thick of things all the time. To have a guy like that in the team is always a boost. You might see two wrist spinners playing together if we feel that we don't need that much depth in the batting in the coming games," said the skipper.

((With Agency Inputs))
First Published: August 24, 2017, 11:30 AM IST

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