India will lock horns with England in the much-anticipated Test series of the year. In fact, there is already a lot of chatter around the series. All that would be set aside when India and England will begin their ultimate Test against each other. Thus, we try to decode India’s Predicted XI for the first Test match.
Meanwhile, it is going to be a long five-match Test series. However, both teams will know the importance of taking the right first steps in a big series. It is imperative to find the right combination early on in the series and fire at all cylinders. Thus, the players should be at the top of their game irrespective of the conditions.
Indian selection on the South African tour had raised some eyebrows. Thus, Virat Kohli and team’s think tank will like to field the best XI according to the conditions.
Sportzwiki tries to crack the code and brings you India’s Predicted XI for the first Test.
Here is a look at India’s Predicted XI for the first Test match at Edgbaston.
KL Rahul has shown the right technique in the red ball version of the game. Furthermore, the flamboyant batsman is in good form. The right-hander had also scored a half-century in the warm-up game.
Murali Vijay was the most successful Indian batsman on the previous tour of England with 402 runs. Meanwhile, Vijay will like to make of his sound technique.
Cheteshwar Pujara will have his role of playing time. However, it is crucial that Pujara must not get himself into a shell. Pujara isn’t in the best of forms but he is going to be the backbone of the middle order.
Virat Kohli (c)
All eyes will be on Virat Kohli. The current Indian skipper could not deliver on the previous tour of England. However, Kohli will like to update his impressive resume and will like to add a ‘Successful England Tour on his CV’.
India didn’t play Ajinkya Rahane in the first two Test matches against South Africa and had to pay the price. Rahane is one of India’s best bets in the overseas conditions. Thus, the Test deputy will like to hit the ground running.
Dinesh Karthik (wk)
Wicket-keeper batsman Dinesh Karthik had a good warm-up match against Essex when he scored a fine 82. Furthermore, Karthik will like to cement his place in the Test arena in the absence of Saha.
Hardik Pandya has shown all the promise of a potential all-rounder. In fact, Pandya had done a decent job on the South African tour. Therefore, the all-rounder will like to contribute with bat as well as the ball.
Ravichandran Ashwin red ball hasn’t dipped. Thus, the talisman spinner must make the cut into the playing XI. Furthermore, he can also chip in with the bat.
Ishant Sharma has all the experience under his belt. Thus, the lanky fast bowler will like to deliver the goods with the ball. Sharma had also scalped three wickets in the warm-up game.
Umesh Yadav will like to surprise the English batsmen with his extra yard of pace. Yadav has shown an upward swing in his improvement graph.
Mohammed Shami should get rid of bowling moody spells. In fact, it is easy to judge Shami’s form in the way he runs to his run-up.