After a thumping victory in the first T20I, the Rohit Sharma-led Team India will look to continue the winning momentum and clinch the three-match series when they face Sri Lanka in the second T20l, here on Saturday.
Team India took a lot of positives from their win in the first T20I. Ishan Kishan looked uncomfortable against West Indies but came out all guns blazing against Sri Lanka in the first T20I, scoring 89 runs in 56 balls with 10 fours and 3 sixes. Shreyas Iyer held the #3 batting position well and displayed his impeccable finishing skills with an unbeaten 57 runs off 28 balls after starting off really slow.
Ishan Kishan (89) and Shreyas Iyer (57*) helped India to a massive score of 199/2, before their bowlers came up with an excellent performance to keep Sri Lanka in check as the hosts won the first T20I in Lucknow by 62 runs to take a 1-0 series lead on Thursday.
Team India had a lot of positives in their win in the first T20I. Ishan, who struggled in the home series against West Indies, signalled his timely return to form with his blazing fifty while Shreyas Iyer, who batted at number three in the absence of the rested Virat Kohli, grabbed the opportunity with both hands.
Both Ishan and Iyer know that they won't be the first choice in the playing XI when India field a full-strength team in the future. So both youngsters will look to repeat their heroics in order to capitalise on the opportunities that are coming their way.
The hosts have another opening option in Ruturaj Gaikwad, who missed the first match due to a wrist injury. If he becomes fit and available in the second T20I, then he could open with Kishan, with skipper Rohit Sharma dropping himself down the order as he did against the West Indies. A fit-again Ravindra Jadeja, who came to bat higher up the order in the previous match, didn't face that many deliveries. But speaking after the game, Rohit said that the all-rounder will continue to bat higher up the order as the team wants to optimise his batting skills.
"We want more from him, that is why we asked him to bat higher. You will see that happening more and more in the games that he plays for India. I want him to bat up the order more," said the skipper about Jadeja.
"He is a very improved batter, so we will try and see if we can promote him going forward. We are very clear with what we want to achieve with him in white-ball cricket," he added.
Meanwhile, comeback man Sanju Samson, who did not get the chance to bat in the opener, will be keen to perform to prove himself again in the international arena.
As far as India's bowling is concerned, the hosts used seven options, including the batting all-rounders Deepak Hooda and Venkatesh Iyer on Thursday and they did well to restrict Sri Lankan batters. Venkatesh was a bit expensive but he took a couple of wickets. And in all likelihood, India will love to go with the same bowling lineup.
However, it will be interesting to see whether teams want to give some game time to Kuldeep Yadav, who has played very few matches in the recent past.
On the other hand, Sri Lanka will need to play out of their skins to end India's 10-match winning streak at the picturesque stadium of Dharamshala. The visitor's top order failed to put up a big performance with the bat while their bowling attack also looked ordinary in the absence of frontline spinners Maheesh Theekshana and Wanindu Hasaranga.
Charith Asalanka, who hit a fifty and was the only positive for Sri Lanka and he will look to repeat his performance.
India: Rohit Sharma (captain), Ishan Kishan (wk), Shreyas Iyer, Sanju Samson, Ravindra Jadeja, Deepak Hooda, Venkatesh Iyer, Harshal Patel, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Yuzvendra Chahal, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Ravi Bishnoi, Avesh Khan, Mohammed Siraj, Kuldeep Yadav.
Sri Lanka: Pathum Nissanka, Kamil Mishara, Charith Asalanka, Dinesh Chandimal (wk), Janith Liyanage, Dasun Shanaka (c), Chamika Karunaratne, Dushmantha Chameera, Praveen Jayawickrama, Jeffrey Vandersay, Lahiru Kumara, Danushka Gunathilaka, Ashian Daniel, Shiran Fernando, Binura Fernando.