Krunal Pandya became India’s 233rd ODI player when he received his ODI cap ahead of the series opener against England at Pune on Tuesday alongside Karnataka pacer Prasidh Krishna. While this is Krishna’s international debut, Krunal has been around the Indian setup for a while, yet it was an emotional moment for the senior Pandya.
The Pandya brothers lost their father Himanshu earlier this year and after receiving his cap Krunal paid tribute to his dad and could not hold back his tears. Younger brother Hardik, part of the playing XI, hugged consoled Krunal.
— BCCI (@BCCI) March 23, 2021
As for the toss, Indian team started the match with losing the toss, as has been the norm in the series so far. After winning the toss, England skipper Eoin Morgan had no hesitation in bowling first, on a Pune wicket that looked to support the bowlers. With overcast conditions, this looks to be the right move by the visiting captain, but all will boil down to, how the Indian batsmen fare.
India, on the other hand, made a few changes in their line up. Kuldeep Yadav finally gets a game here, after a long wait, while two other players — Prasidh Krishna and Krunal Pandya mark their debut.
“Very happy to bat first, we have different plans for the ODIs. The weather is going to drastically change in the evening, so it’s a great opportunity for us to put runs on the board. The last game we played here against England is a great memory. If we believe we are the top side we should be ready to do anything, whether we decide or asked to do something. KL will bat at 5 and keep. Top four are Rohit, Shikhar, myself and Shreyas. Hardik bats at 6, Krunal at 7. Shardul 8, Bhuvi at 9, Prasidh and Kuldeep complete,” Virat Kohli said at the toss.
India (Playing XI): Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli(c), KL Rahul(w), Shreyas Iyer, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Shardul Thakur, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav, Prasidh Krishna
England (Playing XI): Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow, Eoin Morgan(c), Jos Buttler(w), Ben Stokes, Sam Billings, Moeen Ali, Sam Curran, Tom Curran, Adil Rashid, Mark Wood