KOHLI AND CONQUER...
There is much to fancy about the Indians, with a potent bowling arsenal that features the intelligent seam of Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar alongside the spin talents of Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal.
The weight of a billion people's hopes and expectations may weight heavy on most shoulders, but Virat Kohli is no mere mortal.
With Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan with him at the top of the order, India are a formidable force...
A BUMP IN THE ROAD
Everything was coming to the boil nicely. The dynamic top three of Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan were scoring runs for fun and opponents could not keep up. West Indies were comfortably seen off, India won in Australia's back yard and then New Zealand were very much second best in a 4-1 series defeat.
Two matches into a home campaign against the Aussies, with India 2-0 up and cruising, Kohli and Co looked like an impenetrable force. But then it all changed.
Australia won three in a row, claimed the series and we, the rest of the world, were left re-evaluating everything we'd come to believe in.
A RICH HISTORY
India have become frequent participants in the latter stages of the World Cup ever since their maiden historic triumph over the West Indies in 1983.
They have only failed to make the semi-finals on three occasions since their victory at Lord’s, following a round-robin exit in 1992 and a shock group-stage exit in 2007 which was considered one of the darkest days in India’s cricket history coming alongside a super-six exit in 1999. Their performances however during the business end of tournaments have wielded contrasting results.
They were well beaten by Australia in both the 2003 World Cup final and the 2015 semi-final, while semi-final defeats arrived against England in 1987 and to Sri Lanka in 1996, the latter being a default defeat after a rioting crowd stopped proceedings with India in dire straits.
That leaves just 2011, the date of their most recent triumph when on home soil they defeated Sri Lanka this time around thanks to an MS Dhoni masterclass, and they will be looking for similar performances in England under Virat Kohli.
WORLD CUP RECORD
1975: Group stage
1979: Group stage
1992: Round robin
1999: Super Six
2007: Group stage