Cricket World Cup 2019: Unchanged India opt to bat against West Indies in Manchester
Virat Kohli (AFP Photo)

India captain Virat Kohli opted to bat first against West Indies in Match 34 of the ongoing ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 in Manchester on Thursday.

Unbeaten in the tournament so far, the two-time former champions will hope for their fifth win which will put them one step closer to making the semi-finals. On the other hand, theoretically, West Indies aren’t yet out of the race for the last-four but a defeat will certainly end their chances.

India have put faith in the same playing XI which earned them a hard-fought win against Afghanistan in their previous match of the world cup. However, West Indies captain Jason Holder revealed two changes  – Sunil Ambris and Fabian Allen have come in for Evin Lewis and Ashley Nurse.

Kohli expects the wicket to slow down.  “It looks like a hard surface, a used pitch and expect it will slow down. I think closing out situations and capitalising will be the key,” he said at the toss.

Holder would have wanted to bat first but is hopeful of landing some early blows.

Playing XIs

India: KL Rahul, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli (captain), Vijay Shankar, MS Dhoni (wk), Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Mohammed Shami, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah

West Indies: Chris Gayle, Sunil Ambris, Shai Hope (wk), Nicholas Pooran, Shimron Hetmyer, Jason Holder (captain), Carlos Brathwaite, Fabian Allen, Kemar Roach, Sheldon Cottrell, Oshane Thomas