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India v England First T20 Preview

England and India go head to head once more on Thursday, but this time it is in an international Twenty20. There are just two game being played in this short T20 series and both sides will be desperate to come out on top.

England of course secured the Test victory earlier in the week and will want to put the icing on the cake with a win in the shortest format of the game.

However, India are also after a series win as they look to bounce back from a disappointing few Test matches. The sides are sure to be changed around a fair bit, but with the quality that both teams have at their disposal, it should be a cracking encounter on Thursday in Pune.

The Three Lions have made a lot of changes for these two games, and Eoin Morgan will captain the side as Stuart Broad had to fly home with an injury.

Jonny Bairstow, Tim Bresnan, Joe Root and Samit Patel are the only survivors from the Test squad, so need to use their experience in these conditions to their advantage.

It is a young, hungry and talented England squad that face a tough challenge of winning in India, but with the success the tourists have had here so far, they will be confident of a victory.

As for India, Mahindra Singh Dhoni will remain as the captain for them in this T20 series and there is no doubt that he has a point to prove.

The Indians are one of the best T20 teams around and know that nothing other than a couple of wins will do here to put the Tests to the back of their minds.

If we look at some betting offers for the match in Pune, you will see that the home side are being offered at 8/13 with Betfred, so are certainly the favourites.

A bet on England will then give you odds of 11/8, but betting on Eoin Morgan to be the top batsman for his side could be where the best value is at as you can back him at 7/2 with Coral.

Panesar reflects on Day One

After taking four wickets on his return to the Test side, England spinner Monty Panesar has insisted that he and his team-mates need to dismiss India early on day two.

The hosts recovered from 169-6 in difficult conditions to reach 266/6 at the close, largely thanks to a super century from Cheteshwar Pujara. This had some concluding that it had been India’s day, but Panesar – who took 4-91 – believes England are still in a good position.

Reflecting at the close of play, he said: “Tomorrow we have to look to restrict them to maybe 100 runs and then we can see how things go for us.

“There is a bit more bounce and turn in the wicket, enough to keep the seamers and the spinners interested.

“For me it was about trying to get my action in order and get the ball in the right place. From there I pushed on.

“With the way the pitch is there is a chance to get turn and bounce and to get two world-class players, I needed the pitch to do that. It was nice to take scalps like that.”

England are certainly more in the match than they were in the 1st Test. It could have been a lot better, but it could also have been a lot worse. Alastair Cook’s men now need a strong morning tomorrow and then it is their turn with the bat.

Cricket betting pundits will realise that this is perhaps when it can be concluded how well India have done on day one. You never quite know what to expect until both teams have batted. England – who have brought in Jonny Bairstow for Ian Bell – certainly need to improve on their 1st innings showing from the opening test.

If Cook can lead from the front, Compton and Trott can support him, Pietersen can flourish and Bairstow can bring freshness to the batting line-up, things will be looking good in terms of forcing a promising result.

First things first though, England need four more wickets, with Panesar eyeing another five-wicket haul.

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