The ongoing ICC World Cup 2019 has reached at a stage where most of the teams have already pressed the emergency button, however, India are still at peace. Having played the least number of games in the tournament so far — four of which one being washed out — and winning all of them, India have the luxury of seeing others before acting out. Virat Kohli‘s men will next take on former champions West Indies at Old Trafford on Thursday and will think nothing less than a win, provided of course there is no intervention by the rain gods. When India arrived at Manchester for their next clash, dark clouds and strong breeze were found.
The downpour was continuous in the city since Sunday. According to a report in Times of India, the Indian cricketers had to resort to optional indoor training one more time ahead of the match. While India will want a full game on Thursday, the West Indies will be desperate to play for nothing short of a win in their final three games can take the beleaguered Windies close to the semi-finals. Their only win in the tournament had come in May and it’s almost a month that they have not managed a victory in a top tournament like the World Cup.
However, the local meteorological office though has issued a warning of heavy rain and possible flooding for Tuesday, the forecast for the next two days is better. The Met office has even predicted a sunny day on Thursday and that should allow an unhindered game.
India eclipsed Pakistan at the same venue
It was at the Old Trafford that India picked one of their biggest wins of the tournament, against Pakistan. That game had also taken place under overcast conditions and Pakistan captain Sarfaraz Ahmed sent India to bat after winning the toss expecting that the bowlers will have their say. But his plan boomeranged as India went on to win the rain-affected game by 89 runs via DLS rule.
The venue is also a part of the historic India-West Indies rivalry at the World Cup. It was here in 1983 that Kapil Dev’s India had beaten the then defending champions West Indies by 34 runs in the first game of the tournament. They went on to beat Clive Lloyd’s side again in the final at Lord’s to lift their maiden trophy. India have a 5-3 lead over the West Indies at the World Cup.