India v England: Lords test Preview
The stage is set for the 2nd test at Lords between England and India after a gripping first Test at Trent Bridge. Which was delicately poised but washed out on the 5th day with India only 157 away from the target and 9 wickets in hand. Though the target was not a big one, it would have been a bowling day on day 5. As there would have been cloud cover had the match started.
Let us look at the India v England: Lords test Preview respective team scenarios
India was the better team for much of the 1st test. Expected to play the same XI except for Shardul Thakur. Who has suffered a hamstring injury and is out of the 2nd test. India can bank on lots of positives from the 1st test. Both the openers Rohit and Rahul showed great temperament against the moving ball playing close to their body but were not averse to punish anything loose. The bowlers (tailenders)have copped a lot of criticism in the recent past for not showing any resistance and falling like a pack of cards. However, in the 1st test, they showed great resistance and added 73 runs for the last 3 wickets. The bowling has looked incisive and threatening. The only area of concern is a fragile middle order in which Pujara, Kohli and Rahane have struggled so far.
With Shardul not playing, one of Umesh Yadav or Ishant Sharma is expected to play as Virat Kohli. Has already indicated his preference for 4 fast bowlers and one spinning allrounder. Hence Ashwin may have to wait longer to make an impact on the series. Though a drier weather forecast might tilt the scales in his favour at the last moment.
Rohit , Rahul , Pujara , Kohli (c) , Rahane , Pant , Jadeja , Shami , Bumrah , Siraj and Ishant / Umesh .
Unlike India, England appears to have many selection issues. As most of their batsmen have struggled against Indian bowling so much so that Joe Root has looked all alone and class above the rest. Both the openers have struggled. Sibley just hung on at the crease Crawley is out of touch, Lawrence & Buttler struggled too. Bairstow looked good in the 2nd innings but need to convert his starts. All-rounder Sam Curran looked the second best batter of the team.
Moeen Ali has been called up to replenish the batting & provide a spin option. It finally looks that Haseeb Hameed, who scored an impressive 100 in the India tour game. likely to replace either Sibley or Crawley and an option to play Ollie Pope as well.
The bowling looked to rely heavily on Anderson & Robinson. Broad and Sam Curran had a lesser impact. As per the latest fitness news, Broad who has tweaked his calf in training is out of the whole series now which is a huge blow to England and Anderson with a stiff quad looks uncertain for the Lords test which is another shocker for England.
It looks England will go in with a new-look bowling attack for Lords. Saqib Mahmood, who showed impressive form with his pace and movement in the Pakistan ODIs has been called up as cover and may actually end up having his test debut at Lords. Mark Wood looks like a sure starter to replace Broad and the attack is to round up with Robinson and Sam Curran.
Therefore unlike India, England could go in with a few changes in personnel.
Burns , Sibley / Hameed , Crawley / Pope , Root , Bairstow , Lawrence / Moeen , Buttler , Sam Curran , Ollie Robinson , Mark Wood, Anderson / Saqib Mahmood
Weather: It is expected to be drier weather for at least the 1st 4 days of the test
Pitch: The pitch has looked another green top but drier weather may help spinners later
Live telecast: The 2nd is played from 12-16 August and will be telecast live on the Sony network from 3.30 PM IST