Scotland might not be as big a threat as Pakistan, New Zealand and Afghanistan but India know they still have a tough job in hand.
Scotland captain Kyle Coetzer said in the pre-match press conference said that his team will be giving their all on the field to beat India. The way Scotland have played in this tournament, beating Bangladesh in the first round and then qualifying for the Super 12s to giving New Zealand a stiff competition in the last match, expect them to come very hard on Indians who are more desperate for a win. On the other hand, Scotland really have nothing to lose. But they can be party spoilers for sure.
In the press conference on Thursday, Ashwin said that Team India is not discussing permutations of qualifying for the semi-finals. Rather, the whole focus is on winning the remaining two matches.
He said,”The discussion we need to have is how we’re going to go about the couple of games we have left, and everyone’s planning and wanting to go (out) on a real high for the last two games. That is stuff that’s not in our control. It’s fingers crossed.”
Should India drop Shardul for an extra spinner?
Knowing Scotland may not be able to read spin well, India can go all out with a three-spin attack – Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Rahul Chahar/ Varun Chakravarthy. Varun has not picked up any wicket in the first two games he played in the tournament but still he could be a decent pick here, knowing his mystery spin. It is all about executing the right plan. The extra spinner can be a good cushion if someone fails.
Certainly, that will take away one batter from the team but this risk can be taken against Scotland. For a big win, India need to bundle out Scotland and a potent bowling attack can do the same.
India: Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, Virat Kohli (c), Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant (wk), Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin, Rahul Chahar/Varun Chakravarthy, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah
Scotland: George Munsey, Kyle Coetzer (c), Matthew Cross (wk), Richie Berrington, Calum MacLeod, Michael Leask, Chris Greaves, Mark Watt, Safyaan Sharif, Alasdair Evans, Bradley Wheal