Dubai: The T20 series between the top two sides England and India was billed as a dress rehearsal for the T20 World Cup but England made light work of the hosts with a clinical performance and outclassed them in the first match at Motera.
India captain Virat Kohli had announced they would be playing an attacking brand of cricket in this series rather than their traditional brand but things did not go to plan and they were let off the hook by all the England bowlers. But India could muster just 124 runs in their allotted 20 overs which England chased with ease.
It needs to be seen if India bring back Rohit Sharma, who was their highest run getter in the recent Test series, to counter the England bowlers instead of Shikhar Dhawan, who had a pretty ordinary first outing of scoring a scratchy three runs of 12 balls.
Also India need to bring in pacer Navdeep Saini and replace Axar Patel as the England pacers led by Jofra Archer, Mark Wood and Chris Jordan all clocked above 140kph to rattle the Indian top order.
The toss, especially for India, plays a huge role as they have been successful more often in chasing in the shortest format than setting a target. And Kohli had won only one toss in the past five matches against England. So if India are put in again by England it needs to be seen what approach India try this time around. Will they try to go bang, bang and make the power play count? There is a thin line between playing fearless cricket and careless cricket.
India have come back twice in the series after being down - albeit in the Test series, so it needs to be seen if they can punch back for every punch they receive and square the series.