India Kickstarts their international campaign on Wednesday in England for 5 match test series against England Cricket Team. Virat Kohli and co. will square off against England in their first test from tomorrow at Trent Bridge, Nottingham.
After the flop show at inaugral World Test Championship Final last month Indian team will look forward to start their second campaign for the WTC in a positive way. While England's young team will look onto take revenge of India tour earlier this year where they faced harsh loss in the test series.
India have been in the country for two months, where they've played two first class games either side of a vacation. In that time, England lost a Test series to New Zealand, put away Sri Lanka and Pakistan in white-ball formats and began a journey into the unknown with The Hundred.
Pitch Report: After a cloudy opening day, there is rain on the forecast radar from Days 2-5 and teams are likely to be in for a start-stop contest. Nottingham's own, Stuart Broad, suggests Trent Bridge is currently home to the best first-class pitches in the country. "There's been bounce, carry and slips have been in the game," he said. The statistics offer better insight. The last three first-class games at the venue have all resulted in innings wins for the home side with defending County Champions Essex's second-innings 194, the highest achieved by a visiting team.
England- Without the all-round prowess of Ben Stokes, England have a dilemma over how to balance their side. Against New Zealand in June, when Stokes was also absent, they picked four seam bowlers and left out Jack Leach and that is the most likely choice here. Alternatively, they could pick five bowlers, including Leach, but that would weaken the batting. Ollie Pope is a doubt with a quad injury and if he is ruled out, Jonny Bairstow is set for a recall.
India- India may end up with a largely similar side to when they finished the series 1-4 on these shores three years ago. KL Rahul, who ended that tour with a century, is a likely candidate for a surprise return to the opening slot alongside Rohit Sharma. India have played five bowlers in each of their last four overseas Tests, a ploy they are likely to continue
Predicted Playing XI:
England- Rory Burns, Dom Sibley, Zak Crawley, Joe Root (c), Ollie Pope/Jonny Bairstow, Dan Lawrence, Jos Buttler, Ollie Robinson, Mark Wood, Stuart Broad, James Anderson
India- Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul/Hanuma Vihari, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (c), Ajinkya Rahane, Rishabh Pant (wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, Mohammed Siraj/Shardul Thakur, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah