Match Preview – Ireland vs India, India in Ireland 2023, 2nd T20I

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Big picture – India batters will want a proper hit

India batted 41 balls with openers Ruturaj Gaikwad and Yashasvi Jaiswal consuming 39 of those before rain stopped play. The likes of Gaikwad, Rinku Singh, Shivam Dube and Sanju Samson will be keen to make noteworthy performances, if they get a chance, with an eye on the next T20 World Cup that is less than a year away. Among them, Samson – who is also in contention for the Asia Cup – will want to impress the selectors with the squad to be announced on Monday.

For Ireland, it was the lower order that helped them to a modest 139 in the first T20I. The top six, which scored just 64 runs between them with Curtis Campher scoring 39 of them, will have to step up against the quality Indian bowling on Sunday if they want to level the series. Andrew Balbirnie, Paul Stirling and Lorcan Tucker were all among runs in the T20 World Cup Europe Qualifier in July and will be expected to put up a fight here.

Ireland LLWWW (last five completed T20Is; most recent first)

In the spotlight – Gaikwad and McCarthy

Ruturaj Gaikwad survived a mix-up with Jaiswal in the second over of the chase to remain unbeaten on 19 before rain stopped play. He had a successful IPL season where he scored 590 runs in 15 innings at a strike rate of 147. With the team management making him the captain for the Asian Games, scheduled for September end, Gaikwad will be hoping to get some big scores before heading to the tournament.
Barry McCarthy provided a reminder of his batting prowess in the opener, scoring an unbeaten 51 off 33 from No. 8 to lift Ireland from 59 for 6. The allrounder had also finished as the joint-second-highest wicket-taker for Ireland with nine wickets from five matches in the recent T20 World Cup Europe Qualifier.

Team news – will India continue with Arshdeep?

Ireland are unlikely to make changes to their playing XI despite the loss in the first game.

Ireland (possible XI): 1 Paul Stirling (capt), 2 Andrew Balbirnie, 3 Lorcan Tucker (wk), 4 Harry Tector, 5 Curtis Campher, 6 George Dockrell, 7 Mark Adair, 8 Barry McCarthy, 9 Craig Young, 10 Josh Little, 11 Ben White

Arshdeep Singh hasn’t been as effective of late as he had been in the first bit of his international career, though there was the 3 for 38 in the win over West Indies in the fourth T20I. But he returned 1 for 35 in the first T20I against Ireland – and gave away 22 in the final over as McCarthy smashed two sixes and a four – and India do have Avesh Khan and Mukesh Kumar in their line up.

India (possible XI): 1 Yashasvi Jaiswal, 2 Ruturaj Gaikwad, 3 Tilak Varma, 4 Rinku Singh, 5 Sanju Samson (wk), 6 Shivam Dube, 7 Washington Sundar, 8 Arshdeep Singh/Avesh Khan, 9 Ravi Bishnoi, 10 Jasprit Bumrah (capt), 11 Prasidh Krishna.

It is expected to be sunny and pleasant throughout the day.

“Ireland have been playing well, you can’t say that any team is big or small in T20 cricket. In this format, in one over everything can change, just like the last over in this game. If those two wickets didn’t fall, there would be a difference of 10-12 runs. It was because of Sanju and Ruturaj we finished the match. So Ireland have been doing well in this format.”
India legspinner Ravi Bishnoi