Another away Test series has bought a loss in the first match, but Team India will be heading into the second Test match at Lord’s against England on Thursday to make the things equal. The opener at Edgbaston gave a glimpse that several players in the present Indian setup are completely ready to conquer the English conditions, but some of them lacked in the finishing kick.
A four-day break between the two games ave provided a chance for visitors to correct their mistakes committed in the first Test and learn from it only to improve. For the team management, it gives some time to find an apt combination that can produce rather a dominating win and get back in the series. So, it won’t be surprising if the same batting line-up turns out for the next game.
We take a look at the predicted XI, the team which Virat Kohli should lead at Lord’s.
Starting with the openers, with Murali Vijay having a decent overseas record, he doesn’t seem to be getting dropped but there are certain chances of Cheteshwar making a comeback. At the same time, KL Rahul deserves another chance to prove his worth in the squad, so it implies that Shikhar Dhawan will make way for Pujara, only if the change is made.
There is no doubt about the fact that Kohli and his deputy Ajinkya Rahane will be retaining their spots, especially because during India’s last tour to England, Rahane scored a match-winning century at the Home of cricket and Kohli’s inclusion was never a doubt.
The wicketkeeping slot should go to Dinesh Karthik as he has had a stop-start career so far in the longest format, but at the same time, he should pounce at the opportunities. He was jittery in the first Test, never quite confident behind the stumps, but he did fight his way back in the second innings, which cements his position further.
The all-rounder spot will either be filled by Hardik Pandya or Ravindra Jadeja which will depend on the pitch and weather conditions on the match day. Jadeja is expected to make a cut ahead of Pandya not only because of experience but also because of his performances in England in 2014. Ravichandran Ashwin is another definite inclusion in the squad, especially after his 7-wicket haul in the first Test.
In the last game, Ishant Sharma picked a 5-fer in the second innings and proved his importance in the team. With, Jasprit Bumrah declared unfit for the Lord’s there are no chances of any amendments in India’s pace attack, with both Mohammed Shami and Umesh Yadav will retain their places in the playing XI.
India’s Predicted XI for Lord’s Test:
Virat Kohli (c), Murali Vijay, KL Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav, Ishant Sharma.