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ICC ODI World Cup 2023 Match 9: IND vs AFG Match Prediction Will India Make Any Changes?

IND vs AFG Match Prediction for Match 9 of ICC World Cup 2023

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IND vs AFG Match Prediction: India faced arguably their sternest test in the first game of the World Cup. They faced Australia in their opening game. India almost played the perfect game to get off to a winning start. Their bowlers and fielders were electric. India suffered a stutter losing 3 wickets for just 2 runs. Virat Kohli and KL Rahul stitched a memorable partnership to take India to safer waters. Rahul stayed unbeaten to ensure India won without further hiccups. India will be up against Afghanistan in their next game at Delhi.

How did Afghanistan fare in their opening game?

After a promising opening stand, Afghanistan couldn’t capitalize on the foundation. They showed little application in facing quality spin from Bangladesh. Afghanistan could just muster a score of 157. Their fielding left a lot to be desired as Bangladesh overcame the target without much fuss. Afghanistan will rue that they missed a golden opportunity to get their campaign off to a winning start.

IND vs AFG Preview World Cup 2023 Match 9

The Indian team has never lost any game against Afghanistan across formats. They got the better of a spirited Afghan side in the last World Cup edition too. The closest the Afghans came to surprise the Indians was in the 2018 Asia Cup wherein the game ended in a tie. 

It seems to be a tall ask for the Afghans to challenge India, especially on a flat surface like the Kotla in Delhi. Their best chance lies in playing on turning tracks but the game between South Africa and Sri Lanka showed that it is anything but that. India with their win over Australia have consolidated their tag of being favourites. It will be interesting to see how they approach this game. 

Will India look to make any changes to their XI?

Shubman Gill continues to remain on the sidelines owing to dengue. He has been ruled out from this game too. Ishan Kishan will continue to hold on to his spot as the opener. India is unlikely to tinker with their top order for this game. Hardik Pandya had a finger bruise in the game against Australia. India may well decide to rest Pandya and bring him back for the big game against Pakistan on October 14. If Pandya is rested, it will be interesting to see if India replaces him with Shardul Thakur or plays an additional batter. 

The number 8 conundrum:

If Hardik is fit to play and India uses him in minimal bursts, their top 7 will take care of themselves. It is the number 8 position that the team will spend a lot of thought on. The Kotla surface hardly had anything for the spinners in the only game played so far in the World Cup. 

India might look to bring in either Mohammad Shami or Shardul Thakur in place of Ravichandran Ashwin. They may also be tempted to rest one among Mohammad Siraj or Jasprit Bumrah for Shami. It is this game that provides India with the luxury to experiment with a couple of spots. The World Cup will hit fever pitch when they take on arch-rivals and there will be no looking back from thereon.

Vignesh Rajagopal
Vignesh Rajagopalhttps://stumpsandbails.com/
I am a passionate cricket lover, who likes to express his views on the beautiful game and share insights and analysis about the finer aspects of the sport.

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