ENG vs IND: 2nd Test Preview

After a heart-breaking draw in the 1st Test match, India will be looking to carry on the same momentum into the 2nd match. Both the teams will have to work a lot in the batting department as none of the batsmen except KL Rahul, Joe Root & Ravindra Jadeja could create an impact on their performance. 

ENGLAND 

The main dilemma ahead of the second test would be the top order for England. They have tested out more than 10 opening pairs in the past 3-4 years after Alistair Cook’s retirement. Rory Burns, the current best-opening batsman for England has not been able to play as expected especially against India. There has been no significant opening partnership which brings a lot of pressure on their captain Joe Root. Though he carries the team along single-handedly, batsmen from the other end keep on giving away their wickets quite cheaply. Johnny Bairstow, Jos Buttler will have to give their best and try to play along with their captain and take some pressure off his shoulders. 

Apart from the batsmen, another setback for England ahead of the 2nd test is the injury of Stuart Broad their frontline fast bowler who has over 500 test wickets. After Jofra Archer’s injury, this could affect the deadly-looking English Bowling. Saqib Mahmood, the young promising left-arm medium-pacer is likely to replace Stuart Broad in the Lord’s Test.  

James Anderson once again proved his worth in the playing XI. He is the perfect example of “ Age is just a number”. He won the battle of the best against the modern-day great, Virat Kohli, and dismissed him for a Golden Duck. It will be an amazing contest to see Virat bounce back in the 2nd test. Apart from Anderson, the young all-rounder Ollie Robinson continued to impress everyone as he scalped 5 wickets in the first innings. 

Predicted XI 

Haseeb HameedDominic Sibley
Zak CrawleyJoe Root                         (Cap)
Johnny BairstowJos Buttler                      (WK)
Moeen AliSam Curran 
Ollie RobinsonSaqib Mahmood
James Anderson  

India 

Captain Kohli after getting out for a Golden Duck in the very first innings of the series against his arch-rival Anderson, will have a lot of pressure to come out to bat & prove that he comes backs even stronger as he has shown in the past. Billions of cricket fans around the globe are waiting for his 71st International Ton and equalize the record of the former Australian captain Ricky Ponting. 

Apart from King Kohli, “the wall” of Indian cricket and the Vice-captain will also have a lot to live up to. Cheteshwar Pujara has now gone 9 consecutive innings without even scoring a 50. Ajinkya Rahane apart from the century against Australia has not been able to challenge the bowlers. This is a massive concern for India as their middle-order collapses quite quickly even after getting a great start as we saw in the 1st innings. If they aim to win the series in these English conditions, these experienced campaigners will have to play a very important role. 

It’s good to see the “yorker king” back in wicket-taking form. After the WTC final, Bumrah had to deal with a lot of criticism to which he responded superbly by coming out strong and picking up a 5 wicket-haul and 9 wickets in total. All the Indian fast bowlers did a commendable job in the 1st Test by restricting England for a mere total of 183. We expect the Indian pacers to keep on giving their 100% and carry on the same aggression into the following matches. 

We are expected to see 1 change in the Indian Line-up for the 2nd Test due to Shardul Thakur’s injury. Ishant Sharma is expected to replace him for the Lord’s Test & every Indian supporter would want to see him re-create history. His best figures have come against the same team on the same ground back in 2014 where he picked up 7 wickets in the final innings.

Probable XI 

Rohit SharmaKL Rahul
Cheteshwar Pujara Virat Kohli                   (Cap)
Ajinkya RahaneRishabh Pant              (WK)
Ravindra Jadeja Mohammed Shami
Jasprit BumrahMohammed Siraj
Ishant Sharma  
   

Pitch Conditions 

The exclusive english summer of 2021 appears to be emerging with warmer, drier weather expected for the duration at Lord’s Test with very less chances of rain. The pitch looked set to be a typical bat-first pitch where a lot of runs can be scored & a high scoring match can finally be seen at the mecca of Cricket.

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