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After the results of the Test series, not many would have expected the Windies team to put up such a contest in the ODI series. Windies definitely up their game when it comes to ODI cricket but India become an even more formidable side in ODI cricket at the comfort of their home. While the first ODI was a cakewalk for India, Windies came back strong to tie the next one and stun India with a victory in the third ODI. However, India were at their dominating best in the 4th ODI delivering a clinical performance to register their biggest victory against a full member cricket nation. India have taken an unassailable lead but the last game gives Windies a chance to draw level while India will like to seal the series and bring another silverware home.
There were a few areas of concern for India in the first 3 ODIs but everything fell in place for them in the 4th ODI. Indian batting has been firing on full throttle. Virat registered three consecutive centuries in the series and Rohit Sharma is right behind his skipper with two 150+ scores in four games. Ambati Rayudu has made the number 4 spot his own after his century in the last game solving India's middle order woes. The lower middle order is yet to perform but both Dhoni and Jadhav did a decent job finishing the innings for India in the last game.
The Windies batting has matched the Indians barring the last ODI. Shimron Hetmeyer and Shai Hope have been in red-hot form and Jason Holder has just been getting better with the bat with each passing game. Windies bat deep and they are natural strikers of the ball capable of sending the ball a long way. Indian bowlers did a fantastic job in countering them in the last game while the fielders were lightning on the field with our skipper, Virat Kohli effecting a wonderful run-out.
Coming to the Indian bowling, Bhuvneshwar Kumar has looked slightly lacklustre since his return and he will be itching to deliver a standout performance to gain some confidence for the series in Australia. Jasprit Bumrah went wicketless in the last game but he's been effective in the last two games. Khaleel Ahmed was the surprise factor for Windies in the 4th ODI and we all got to witness his true potential. Ravindra Jadeja has had a quiet tournament with the ball so far but he provides the much-needed balance to the side. Yuzvendra Chahal, who didn't feature in the last game might get a look in ahead of the 5th ODI.
India still look a better side heading into the 5th game with their bowling coming along and Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma being in fine form. But we've seen what Windies are capable of and we can expect a cracker of a contest in the 5th ODI.
Catch all the action from the 5th of the five ODIs at the Greenfield International Stadium in Thiruvananthapuram, Thursday, 1st November, 1:30 PM IST.