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India v England , 3rd Test Preview: Another spinning track greets both sides in Mohali

Team India
Team India. (Photo Source: BCCI)

In spite of the Mohali wicket proving to be a pace-filled track in recent times, the third India v England Test at the Punjab Cricket Association is expected to be one filled with the turn. Similar to the previous Test that saw the South Africans spin themselves out, the Indians would certainly be confident of adding to their Test win at Vishakapatnam.

However, England has a decent record against India, especially give the fact that they usually come from behind to complete a win. The last time England was in India, they won 2-1 and India’s tour of England also concluded in a similar result. But, this is a different Indian team under a new coach and a captain who exudes aggression on the field.

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The series has also seen its first taste of controversy following the fact that a few have gone on to frame the Indian skipper for ball tampering. Although there has been little or no ICC sanctions for the same as well as the fact that the Indians being on the upper hand momentarily, the third Test will proceed with little or no problems, to say the least.

Team Analysis

India

Following their impressive win in Vizag, the Indians will be looking to make it two-nothing as the Test match in Mohali beckons. While this holds to be true, it would also be wise to heed to some history that sees England being the comeback kings against the Indians. As mentioned earlier, the Britons have come from behind the last two times to take 2-1 and 3-1 wins respectively.

However, with Virat Kohli as the incumbent skipper of the Indian team at the moment, it seems clear that the 28-year old would certainly not want history to record him as a scalp of Alastair Cook as well. Moreover, his aggressive brand of cricket would also add to the impression that the Indians would be anything but easy to beat.

As far as the team news is concerned, the Indians are forced into an enforced change, one that sees Parthiv Patel make his way in for the injured Wriddhiman Saha. Rishabh Pant has also been kept on standby for the same. Given the fact that this is a five-match Test series, the Indians may be looking at resting their pacers especially given the fact that Ishant Sharma and Bhuvneshwar Kumar are still warming the benches.

England

The loss at Vizag has seen the England management take a call on what needs to be done as far as the team selection for the third Test goes. The green wicket is something that would give the Brits some hope given the fact that they have perhaps the best exponent of swing bowling in the form of James Anderson.

Once again, similar to the Indians, the England management would certainly be having one eye on player fatigue and would be looking to give a piece of their pace battery a rest. Chris Woakes would be expected to make his way into the side. However, the main news would be the axing of Ben Duckett, something that sees him opening the door for Jos Buttler who has been in the reckoning for a long time.

Zafar Ansari’s low-key performances in the previous matches have now seen him also shown the door as the 39-year old Gareth Batty would be expected to make it back into the side following the arduous tour of Bangladesh. Apart from this, it seems unlikely that there would be any more changes as the Brits would be looking to stick to the nucleus of their side.

Playing XI (Probable)

India:

Virat Kohli (C), Parthiv Patel (WK), KL Rahul, Murali Vijay, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Ravichandran Ashwin, Jayant Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammad Shami, Bhuvneshwar Kumar/Umesh Yadav

England:

Alastair Cook (C), Jonny Bairstow (WK), Haseeb Hameed, Joe Root, Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, Moeen Ali, Adil Rashid, James Anderson, Chris Woakes, Gareth Batty

StAttack:

1. Alastair Cook requires 105 runs to complete 11000 runs in Test cricket. Should he complete this feat, he will enter the top ten run-getters in Test cricket.

2. James Anderson requires one more 10-wicket haul to complete 4 10-wicket hauls in Test cricket. Should he complete this feat, he will join the great Sir Ian Botham who also has four to his name.

3. Moeen Ali requires 5 wickets to complete 100 Test match wickets. His Indian counterpart Ravindra Jadeja requires 9 wickets to complete the same.

4. Virat Kohli requires 109 runs to complete 4000 Test runs. He will become the 14th Indian to achieve this feat.

5. India has a decent record at the PCA in Mohali having won 4 of their last five matches. The last time India lost at this venue was in 1994 against the West Indies. This also happened to be their first match at this venue.

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