Ed Hawkins previews the only T20 between the sides from Sabina Park on Sunday and says the visitors are far too short for support...
"The hosts lead 4-2 on the head-to-heads so there will be no sense of inequality for this contest, something which possibly hampered West Indies in the ODI series"
West Indies [2.56] (2pts)
West Indies v India
Sunday 9 June 16.30
TV: live on Sky Sports
Chris Gayle is a surprise inclusion for this one-off. The hard-hitting opener, whose star is beginning to wane, has not played for the Windies since the World T20 final in 2016.
But he remains their highest runscorer in the format with 1,519 runs and a strike rate just shy of 150. He replaces Lendl Simmons who had a poor series against Afghanistan.
There are other notable inclusions. Samuel Badree, Sunil Narine, Kieron Pollard and Marlon Samuels give this XI a strong look. Carlos Brathwaite leads but, alas, the selectors have decided to rest Jason Holder.
The 3-1 defeat in the recent ODI series is not really relevant. Only four players are retained and this is by far West Indies' best format. Nor is the mediocre showing against Afghianstan for largely the same reason.
India's squad for the T20 'leg' is the same as the ODI. But we would expect there to be at least one change. Rish Pant will surely get a game here, probably at the expense of Yuvraj Singh.
Another selection issue will be to decide between Kedar Jadav and Dinesh Karthik at No 6. Kuldeep Yadav looks to have solidified his place in the team so one from Ravi Ashwin and Ravi Jadeja will miss out.
Ajinkya Rahane should bat at No 3 with Virat Kohli and Shikhar Dhawan opening the batting. Bhuv Kumar and Mohammad Shami are in competition for a seamer spot with Umesh Yadav in favour.
There have been only two T20s at Sabina Park. They produced totals of 116 and 96. The first by West Indies in defeat by Ireland, the second by West Indies in victory against the same team. We do not expect such a bowler-dominated game if the ODI was anything to go by. The ball seemed to be coming onto the bat quite well.
West Indies are a difficult side to put faith in for ODI or Tests. But not T20s. They are a slice of value here at [2.56] with India prohibitive at [1.59].
We cannot justify such a gulf in odds. Man for man India do have the edge but, as we always say, it only takes a couple from the underdogs to come off to cause an upset.
The hosts lead 4-2 on the head-to-heads so there will be no sense of inequality for this contest, something which possibly hampered West Indies in the ODI series.
Spin was the difference in the final match and if the pitch takes turn again then Windies will reckon they can more than match India with Badree and Narine.
Top West Indies runscorer
This is Gayle's home ground and he should be fired up to go big on a rare appearance. He is [3.15]. With Gayle absent for such a large chunk of time, the top runscorer in the last 12 months is Evin Lewis. He has an average of 26 and strike rate of 142. The [4.3] may not float your boat, though. Samuels, two runs behind Lewis on that chart and with a superior average of 32, is [4.8].
Top India runscorer
Kohli goes off as short as [2.96] following his top-bat effort in the last ODI and his opening slot. Rahane, who has been in good touch, is [4.3]. Pant gets a [9.0] quote and if he bats at No 4, as expected, that is clearly the value selection.
Ed Hawkins P-L
Based only on available prices. Does not include back-to-lay in-running match advice or commission rate. Figures 2013-2016 on 1pt level stakes. New points system (0.5pt-5) introduced for 2017.
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