New Delhi :
India's quest for glory will face a stern test in hungrier England, giving skipper Virat Kohli and Ravi Shastri to put their thinking caps on and contemplate on tactics a little more. The Indian team has been clinical being unbeaten in the tournament thus far. England, on the other hand, suffered a horrific defeat against Australia and players, from a distance have looked shattered and slumped to a quiet place.
The England team has been able to dominate in their home conditions from last year and a half and the way the World Cup has panned out for them, it is nothing short of a disaster and in this condition, their mental fatigue cannot be underestimated. Still, their progress to the semi-finals can be dictated by their own terms unless they suffer another loss and table switches upside down.
For India, the scenario seems to be quite simple. As of now, the team is comfortably sitting at the second spot and a win against the host-England will help men-in-blue to seal the semi-final spot in 2019 World Cup and go to the top of the points table.
It is highly unlikely that the Indian team will tinker with their opening combination. KL Rahul has looked good at the top, even when he has failed to convert starts into big scores. Rohit Sharma, on the other hand, has been India's most successful batsman in this World Cup barring the game against Afghanistan and the controversial dismissal against West Indies. Virat Kohli will bat at number three and will certainly be followed by Vijay Shankar.
MS Dhoni, scoring a gusty half-century against Afghanistan is also a positive sign for India. The bowling has also come good for the team with Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammad Shami being able to pick wickets at the start. India's wrist spinners 'Kul-Cha' Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal have been more than just effective in the middle overs.
Probable XI: KL Rahul, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli (c), Vijay Shankar, MS Dhoni (wk), Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammad Shami, Yuzvendra Chachal, Jasprit Bumrah.
Jason Roy, who was sidelined due to hamstring tear against the West Indies is likely to replace James Vince into the playing eleven. Jonny Bairstow will certainly occupy the second spot irrespective of his social media statement. Joe Root will start at number three followed by skipper Eoin Morgan and Jos Buttler.
Ben Stokes, who has looked most balanced in the team will come next. Team's x-factor Jofra Archer has been more than just efficient at the start of the innings along with Mark Wood and Chris Woakes.
Probable XI: Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root, Eoin Morgan (c), Jos Buttler (wk), Ben Stokes, Moeen Ali, Chris Woakes, Jofra Archer, Mark Wood, Adil Rashid.
Who will win?
Any India-England clash is a marquee clash and one has to say, the game has the dynamics of its own. The two nations carry on and off the field history, which has eventually dished out cricket of a very high order. In all, the India team start favourites against England purely because of the momentum.
Weather and Pitch
The forecast at Edgbaston in Birmingham is clear and the temperature is likely to touch 23-degree celsius. The pitch is expected to be batting friendly, however, the batsmen can experience some lateral movement of the wicket at the start of their innings.
Stadium and Timings
The encounter will take place at Edgbaston in Birmingham at 15:00 pm IST local.