The visitors England are ready to face the hosts India in the opening match of the five-match T20I series, which will be played this Friday (12th March) night at Narendra Modi Stadium (Motera, Ahmedabad).
Just like the Indian team, England will also play their first limited-overs international match during this T20I series opener. While they just lost the Test series in this tour by the 3-1 margin, the visitors are desperate to win this new series opener.
India vs England 2021, 1st T20I: England’s Predicted XI
Opener Jason Roy scored only 30 runs in three matches during their last T20I series against the hosts South Africa. But he was in good form in the recently concluded BBL 2020/21 as he scored 355 runs in 12 matches with the help of two fifties. As the present England team has huge competition in every playing XI, he needs to perform more consistently.
Jos Buttler (wk)
After struggling in the first two T20Is during their last South Africa tour, Jos Buttler scored the match-winning 67 not out. In T20 cricket, Buttler is a very consistent performer and he is very much aware of the Indian condition as he has recent IPL experiences.
During their last South Africa tour, Dawid Malan finished as the leading run-scorer in the T20I series as he scored 173 runs in three games (average 86.50 and strike-rate 161.68). He scored 19, 55 and 99 not out respectively in that series. But he performed mostly in an average way during the BBL 2020/21. However, Dawid Malan is still the no.1 batsman in the latest ICC T20I rankings.
Eoin Morgan (C)
Captain Eoin Morgan is a very crucial name in this England batting line-up. Though he scored only 38 runs in two innings (12 & 26*) during the T20I series against the hosts South Africa last December, Morgan’s bat doesn’t remain silent for a long time.
While Jonny Bairstow hugely struggled during the last two Tests of this India tour, he scored a match-winning 86 not out during the T20I series opener against the hosts South Africa last December but scored only 3 runs in the next game of that series. Bairstow needs to prove his consistency and it is a good time for him to return to his familiar batting form.
All-rounder Ben Stokes mostly disappointed with his bat during the recently concluded Test series against the hosts India, despite scoring two good half-centuries. In the last Test of this tour, he also took four wickets during India’s first innings. While he is a very crucial name in the England team, Stokes needs to improve his struggling T20I records.
During the recent Test series against the hosts India, Moeen Ali was selected in the only game where he took a total of eight wickets (4/128 & 4/98) and also scored firing 43 runs during the toughest fourth innings. Due to his enough IPL experiences, Moeen Ali can play a good role in this T20I series.
During their last South Africa tour, Sam Curran was one of England’s most wicket-taker in the T20I series by picking up three wickets in three games. Apart from his strong left-arm bowling, the left-handed batsman Sam is also a good big hitter.
Sam Curran’s elder brother Tom Curran is also a strong bowling all-rounder. While he has hit three T20 half-centuries, Tom has shined only as a bowler in the T20I cricket. He needs to prove his consistency and this T20I series is going to be very important in his career.
In England’s T20I pace-bowling line-up, Chris Jordan plays a huge role. Jordan is highly useful in the death overs who also got 3 wickets during their last T20I series against South Africa.
Leg-spinner Adil Rashid plays a very important role in England’s limited-overs international matches. While India will host the next T20 World Cup at the end of this calendar year, this series can be a great experience for him.