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Saturday, 22 June 2013

Preview: India vs England - Champions Trophy 2013 Final

MS-Dhoni-Alastair-Cook-ICC-Champions-Trophy-2013
What
The final of Champions Trophy 2013, between India and England
Where
Edgbaston, Birmingham, England
When
15:00 IST, Sunday, June 23, 2013
The Teams
India
Such has been India’s domination in the tournament that they have won all their matches so far with the same XI. The positives – batting and fielding – have been brilliant enough to cover up a relative lack of steel in the pace bowling department.
Up to the semi-final, India got home-like slow and flat wickets. Small wonder then their spinners dominated. However, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ishant Sharma and Umesh Yadav gave an account of their skills in swinging, overcast conditions against Sri Lanka to take the team to the final.
After tasting success on different types of wickets and overcoming opponents with varied strengths, India will be feeling confident going into the final against the hosts. Setting their record straight in England after their forgettable 2011 tour here might act as additional motivation for MS Dhoni and co.
England
England, with a solitary defeat – against Sri Lanka – have emerged as the second best team of the tournament after India. However, going into the final, the hosts can feel they have a slight upper-hand, given the balance of their team in conjunction with the conditions at play.
In Alastair Cook, Ian Bell and Jonathan Trott they have the most stable top order, while James Anderson, Steven Finn and Stuart Broad form a highly skillful pace attack on typical English wickets and weather. The trio will look to exploit Indian batsmen’s susceptibility against the moving new ball. Also, the Indian middle order has not spent much time in the middle given the top order’s splendid show. England bowlers will surely bear that in mind when they take the field on Sunday.
Key players
India
The weather forecast in Birmingham for Sunday is very similar to that on the day when India defeated Sri Lanka in the semi-final. If the conditions are similar for the final, Bhuvneshwar Kumar will play a key role with the new ball. The accuracy in his line and length and his ability to swing the ball both ways from good length will come in handy against a solid English top order.
Ishant will be high on confidence and in rhythm after his Man of the Match-winning performance in the previous match. Firing with wickets up front could be the key to India’s success against England.
England
For all the criticism he cops for his strike-rate – which is actually very decent at 89.69 – Jonathan Trott has been the sheet anchor of England’s batting in this tournament. Doggedness becomes the biggest virtue when batting in bowler-friendly conditions and Trott has that in abundance. If he is allowed to hang around for long, he has the ability to bat through the innings and carry the team with him.
On the bowling front, the young Indian batting line-up will face one of the sternest tests of their careers – that of facing Anderson in his own backyard. If they come up trumps, they can be very proud of themselves.
The Squads
India: MS Dhoni (capt/wk), Shikhar Dhawan, Murali Vijay, Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina, Dinesh Karthik, Rohit Sharma, Irfan Pathan, Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Amit Mishra, Vinay Kumar
England: Alastair Cook (capt), James Anderson, Jonny Bairstow (wk), Ian Bell, Ravi Bopara, Tim Bresnan, Stuart Broad, Jos Buttler, Steven Finn, Eoin Morgan, Joe Root, Greame Swann, James Tredwell, Jonathan Trott, Chris Woakes

source: bcci.tv

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