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Cricinfo Newsletter - India v England, ODI Series

India v England, One-day Series March 28-April 15
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World Cup build-up starts here
England's astonishing victory in last week's thrilling third Test at Mumbai was one of the most uplifting results in the team's recent history, and with Johnny Cash still ringing in the players' ears, they can now move forward to a gruelling seven-match one-day series with more than just a spring in their step. Andrew Flintoff, England's colossus of a captain, will be refreshed after a brief home visit to meet his newborn son, and with places for the 2007 World Cup up for grabs, there will be plenty competitive vigour on display, particularly in the absence of such key performers as Marcus Trescothick and Steve Harmison. One-day cricket, however, is India's favourite form of the game, and so their chastened players will be expected to bounce back from their Mumbai mauling. Sachin Tendulkar may be absent with a shoulder problem, but the likes of Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Irfan Pathan and Virender Sehwag are among the game's most explosive performers.
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India squad Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Rahul Dravid (capt), Yuvraj Singh, Mohammad Kaif, Suresh Raina, MS Dhoni (wkt), Irfan Pathan, Venugopal Rao, Munaf Patel, Sreesanth, Harbhajan Singh, Ajit Agarkar, Ramesh Powar, Rudra Pratap Singh
England squad Andrew Flintoff (capt), Kabir Ali, James Anderson, Gareth Batty, Ian Bell, Ian Blackwell, Paul Collingwood, Matthew Hoggard, Geraint Jones (wkt), Sajid Mahmood, Kevin Pietersen, Liam Plunkett, Matt Prior, Owais Shah, Vikram Solanki, Andrew Strauss

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Matthew Hoggard After bowling his heart out during the three Tests, Hoggard was all set for a relaxing break in Goa before heading back to England. But, as with last winter in South Africa, he has received an eleventh hour SOS to the one-day team, so now has the not-so-relaxing experience of bowling to Sehwag, Dravid and Co. in the coloured clothing. He has never settled in the one-day team, but is in such a rich vein of form that now is a perfect chance to have another crack.
Yuvraj Singh He is evolving into an Indian Michael Bevan but with oodles of flair and aggression. An average of 110.6 in the last two series against Sri Lanka and South Africa speaks for itself but what's most impressive is the responsibility he has shouldered and the ease with which he has handled chasing under pressure. If Yuvraj can remain as consistent and his partner in crime Mahendra Dhoni as destructive, India should have few problems in winning the series.

 

Virender Sehwag With Tendulkar missing, Sehwag will have to bear much of the responsibility to get India off to a good start. Sehwag's problem in ODIs has been rather curious. He invariably gets good starts but he almost always doesn't convert them. In his last 15 ODIs, Sehwag has reached 20 on 12 occasions but only twice has he gone on to post a fifty. Of late, he has been troubled by a back injury and has struggled against the steepling short balls that England peppered him with.
Ian Bell After the success of England's newcomers during the Tests, Bell is now the player nervously looking over his shoulder. He has yet to establish a firm place in the one-day line-up, having suffered from being shunted around most positions from No. 1 to No. 7. Seven matches means he will be given an opportunity and he needs to perform to rescue his tour of India, which has undone many of the positives achieved in Pakistan.

 
Munaf Patel
Munaf forced himself into the Test side with a searing display of reverse swing that claimed ten England wickets in the tour match at Vadodara. What impressed most was his ability to reverse swing the ball and find the blockhole consistently, two qualities that will be superb assests in the one-day format. Munaf made his case for ODI selection irresistible when he took 7 for 97, the best figures by an Indian fast bowler on debut, and bowled India to victory in the second Test at Mohali.
Series schedule
Match 1 - March 28, Delhi
Match 2 - March 31, Faridabad
Match 3 - April 3, Goa
Match 4 - April 6, Cochin
Match 5 - April 9, Guwahati
Match 6 - April 12, Jamshedpur
Match 7 - April 15, Indore
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