Sam Curran might take the new ball in the first Test against Windies

Skipper Joe Root recognises that and feels the team needs to adapt just like they did in Sri Lanka.

Sam Curran
Sam Curran. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
Sahil Jain

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England are in the Caribbean for a three-match Test series before the focus shifts to shorter forms in the lead up to the all-important World Cup. After a poor winter last year where they lost the Ashes 4-0 and lost 1-0 in New Zealand, the Brits are back on track as far as red-ball cricket is concerned. One of the biggest positives for England last year was the emergence of all-rounder Sam Curran in red-ball cricket.

They squared the series 1-1 against Pakistan before beating India 4-1. But the most satisfying win would’ve been the 3-0 whitewash they handed Sri Lanka in the subcontinent. Hence, Joe Root’s team seems to be in a decent space and enter this series as favourites as well.

One of the emerging stars in England’s Test team was Sam Curran. The 20-year-old Surrey all-rounder took the world by storm with his ability to turn games with the bat and pick crucial wickets. In the first two Tests in Sri Lanka, he partnered James Anderson with the new ball as the team management decided to pick three spinners. Hence, veteran Stuart Broad was left out of the side.

Now, with England shifting back to a seam-dominated attack, Anderson and Broad will have Curran as the third wheel. In fact, he might as well take the new ball. The left-arm seamer was handed the brand new red Dukes cherry in the two practice games against West Indies President’s XI. Curran from his left arm angle has the ability to swing the ball both ways and could partner with Anderson in the first Test. The opening Test match of this tour is slated to start on January 23rd at Bridgetown in Barbados.

We’ll have to be adaptable: Joe Root

Windies now use the Dukes ball instead of the Kookaburra for Test cricket. Hence, England will be used to the ball as it’s similar to the one they use back home. However, the conditions are going to be a lot different and there is an element of unpredictability about the pitches.

Thus, skipper Joe Root recognises that and feels the team needs to adapt just like they did in Sri Lanka. “We could get a number of different-type wickets (in the West Indies) so we’ll have to be adaptable as we were in Sri Lanka,” Root said.

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