India v England: 3rd test at Leeds — preview
The stage is set for the 3rd test at Leeds where the ball swings. When there is cloud cover and better batting conditions at other times. The momentum is with India after their dramatic last-day win at Lords from a difficult situation. After the humiliating batting display, there are bound to be mental scars in the fragile England batting which is a one-man army.
Let’s look at the teams of India v England: 3rd test at Leeds — preview
After Lords win, it is likely that India may go with the same XI after all as it is tough to change the bowling combination after such a heroic fight by all the fast bowlers.
However, with Shardul back to full fitness and Leeds expected to help in swing, India might be tempted to bring in Shardul. Who also adds not depth in the lower order batting. Another option India may look at is to add a bit more bite in the spin department by getting Ashwin in the XI ahead of Jadeja. Who is batting well and has not looked threatening with the ball. Ashwin’s batting has also come up well in the last 8 months and there will be an addition of a left-hander in the England top order at Leeds.
The batting lineup is expected to be unchanged with runs for the much-maligned duo of Pujara and Rahane at Lords and the openers batting beautifully. All eyes will be on Kohli as he is yet to really fire as a batter in this series.
Probable India XI
Rohit , Rahul , Pujara , Kohli , Rahane , Pant , Jadeja / Ashwin , Ishant / Shardul , Shami , Bumrah and Siraj
England has a lot of bowling injury issues and lots of batting worries. Mark Wood with his shoulder injury is the latest joinee in the lost list of England bowlers. That already includes Broad, Archer, Stone and Woakes. In all probability, Saqid Mahmood may get to play his 1st test. Saqib has shown great form in the ODI series vs Pakistan and bowls good outswingers at pace. Craig Overton with better batting credentials is another fast bowling option available for England.
It also remains to be seen whether England retains Sam Curran. Who has been under par in this series with the ball and got a pair at Lords. However, the Leeds pitch does help Sam Curran type of bowlers.
The trouble England batting will see changes with Hameed opening for Sibley and Dawid Malan making a comeback in test cricket to bat at 3. Bairstow, Buttler and Moeen Ali need to produce the runs for England to provide more support for Root. Who is singlehandedly carrying the whole batting in his shoulders. Also remains to be seen if England plays the additional batsman in Ollie Pope.
Probable England XI
Burns , Hameed , Malan , Root , Bairstow , Buttler , Moeen , Sam Curran / Overton , Robinson , Anderson , Saqib Mahmood.
It also remains to be seen how much both the teams control themselves from the on-field aggression that was at display at Lords with players going at each other. Root has indicated that England will shun any form of on- field aggression at Leeds while Kohli said his team will hit back only if provoked.
The weather is expected to stay good on all 5 days with only slight rains expected on the 5th day.
The pitch does not have much of a green tinge and is expected to produce runs.
The match is starting at 3:30 PM IST and will be live on Sony Television.