WORLD champions and Champions Trophy winners India currently have 122 ranking points, a massive 68 more than 10th-placed Zimbabwe.
In the first ODI, there was no masking the huge difference in quality between the two sides, though India’s squad is filled with understudies.
What would have helped Zimbabwe put up more of a fight was winning the toss, which could prove critical in deciding whether the matches in Harare are competitive.
After Virat Kohli called correctly on Wednesday, the new balls jagged around sharply for the first hour, posing may problems for Zimbabwe’s openers. Sikandar Raza and Vusi Sibanda were able to withstand the early examination but the score only moved along sluggishly.
With games starting as early as 9am, that early assistance is even more pronounced.
By the time India came out to bat, the pitch had dried out and was a benign batting surface which offered little for Zimbabwe’s bowlers.