After a hard-fought limited overs cricket in the ODI and T20I format where the honours were equal, India and England lock horns against each other in a gruelling five-match Test series.
Cricket news: The Coach is also confident about Pujara’s return to form
Going into the first Test, which starts from August 1 at Edgbaston, India has a series of problems starting from injuries to team combinations.
India have to make a gamble to choose their opening pair from the available candidates in the likes of KL Rahul, Shikhar Dhawan and Murali Vijay.
In the recently concluded three-day warmup game against Essex at Chelmsford, Vijay and Rahul scored half-centuries in their first innings while Rahul also looked firm in the second innings too.
However Dhawan failed to open his account in both the innings as he scored a golden duck in the warmup game. Meanwhile the head coach of the Indian team, Ravi Shastri, opened up about the opening combination ahead of the first Test match.
“Rahul has been picked as the third opener. But our batting order will always be flexible. The third opener can play anywhere in the top four. We are a very, very flexible outfit. Be prepared for that. We will surprise you guys at times,” Shastri was quoted as saying by ESPNCricinfo.
India’s middle-order batsman Cheteshwar Pujara is also going through a tumultuous period as he scored just 172 runs in 12 innings while representing Yorkshire in the County Championship.
To add to his agony he could not play well in the practise game as well. Shastri is confident about Pujara’s return to form very soon.
“Pujara’s an extremely experienced player. I feel he is one innings away [from a big score]. He needs to spend time at the crease. If he gets one 60-70 under his belt, he will be a different player altogether. My job is to make sure he is thinking in that fashion.
“We have seen once he gets in, he makes it count. He is one player who will really make it count and hold the innings together, so he becomes important,” the former cricketer added.