New Delhi: In the just concluded ODI series between India-New Zealand, hosts not only won the series 3-2, but also humiliated the Kiwis at the decider at Visakhapatnam on Sunday.
India won the match with ease, by a whopping 190-run margin, and captured the series. But there are still many flaws which MS Dhoni & Co need to fix before the Champions Trophy 2017 in England.
The defending Champions don't have the luxury of playing many ODI matches before the big event. The Indian team schedule is filled with Test series against England, Bangladesh and Australia.
Chances of improvement in the batting line up rather look bleak, as there are only 150 overs left for team India to work with their permutations and combinations in the three match ODI series against England, starting January 15 next year.
The main concern regarding the batting line up is the form of openers. In 12 consecutive matches, India are without an opening partnership of fifty in ODIs at home.
Their last opening partnership of 50-plus runs came almost two years ago. On November 9, 2014, Shikhar Dhawan and Ajinkya Rahane posted 62 runs for the first wicket against Sri Lanka at Hyderabad.
The known openers that India have at their disposal are Dhawan, Rahane, Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul. But only two of them can be given a chance to play on the bouncy tracks of England.
The defending Champions need to have a solid looking opening partnership if they want to pile up some runs in the start of the innings and set the tone for the likes of Virat Kohli and Dhoni.
The chances are that India will go with the combination of Rohit-Dhawan to open the innings, the 'Chase Master' Kohli at number 3, Jinks at number 4 and 'the finisher' Dhoni to follow.
India will start their Champions Trophy campaign with a tie against arch-rivals Pakistan on June 4 at Edgbaston, Birmingham.