ICC Cricket World Cup 2019: India one win away from a semi-final berth; Next up - England

India have remained unbeaten in all their ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 matches till now. So can the Men in Blue defeat hosts, England and qualify for the semifinals?

ICC Cricket World Cup 2019: India one win away from a semi-final berth; Next up - England

India pulled off an easy win against West Indies in their ICC Cricket World 2019 match on Thursday, June 27. The Indian team defended the target of 269 and won against the Men in Maroon by 125 runs. As India pipped the Caribbean side, they have now climbed to the 2nd spot on the World Cup 2019 points table and are just one point away from qualifying for the semi-final.

Accordingly, Virat Kohli & Co. will now face England at Edgbaston on June 30, Sunday.

While India will play the hosts, they will look to maintain their unbeaten World Cup 2019 winning run. On the other hand, the Eoin Morgan-led side will look to score crucial points to stay in contention to qualify for the World Cup semi-final after losing their last two matches against Sri Lanka and Australia respectively. 

Prior to the much-anticipated clash, here are some talking points that can turn the match in India's favour:

Encash on the spinner-friendly pitch

The India-England World Cup 2019 match will be held at Edgbaston where as per the analysts, the pitch has provided 4.05 degrees of turn in the two matches it has hosted so far, more than any of the other nine venues. This can be used by the Indian spinners to turn the match in India's favour by bowling the right length and extracting the help provided by the pitch.

Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal have been leading Team India's spin attack and so far, the spinners have done an exceptional job at dismissing the batsmen at the right intervals.

The Indian batsmen, on the other hand, need to play carefully against England's Adil Rashid and Moen Ali to ensure a smooth win over the hosts.

Look to silence the in-form England top-order

Despite losing their last two games, England have the ability to bounce back with consistent batting performances from in-form English batsmen. The team consists of explosive batsmen like Joe Root, Jonny Bairstow, Eoin Morgan, and Jos Buttler, along with all-rounder Ben Stokes who have played match-winning knocks in several matches for the team.

Therefore, if Team India want to win the match effortlessly, the Indian bowlers must put up a consistent show and look to hinder any partnerships from being built.

Work on the meek Middle Order

Every Indian cricket fan can agree upon the fact that the Indian middle order has managed to ride so far without facing criticism due to the phenomenal performance by the Indian top-order and finishers along with Indian bowlers. So far, none of the middle order batsmen have played anchor innings in the Cricket World Cup 2019 matches.

For the last three matches, Virat Kohli has included Vijay Shankar in the playing XI as Shikhar Dhawan's replacement and KL Rahul was pushed to open the inning for India, making room for Shankar. However, the all-rounder has failed to make a significant contribution with his batting as well as bowling. Along with this, he hasn't been used as a regular bowler throughout the matches, so it's high time that the Indian team replaces Shankar with either Dinesh Karthik or young left-handed batsman Rishabh Pant.

If Kohli decides to play Rishabh Pant, former skipper MS Dhoni can bat at No.4 and play a big inning after settling down. On the other hand, if Karthik plays, Team India can use him at No.4, No.5, or No.6, with the wicketkeeper-batsman being comfortable at any required position. With a bowling line-up studded with Jofra Archer, Mark Wood, and Chris Woakes, India will need to find a better alternative.

So, as the Indian team faces England on June 30, Sunday, the Men in Blue will look to clinch the first position by beating the hosts whereas the English side will look to stay in the competition by winning against an unbeaten side.

What to expect?

The weather at Edgbaston, Birmingham is expected to be hot with almost no chances of rain and therefore, one can expect that there should be no interruption during the match. The pitch also is expected to assist spinners.

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