When and Where to Watch India vs England, Live Streaming, Match Preview, Timings, and Pitch Report for 1st Test

When and Where to Watch India vs England, Live Streaming, Match Preview, Timings, and Pitch Report for 1st Test

India has second-most wins at home in Tests (22) since 2015, whereas England has second-most wins away (12) since 2015.

Ajinkya Rahane and Virat Kohli
Ajinkya Rahane and Virat Kohli. (Photo Source: BCCI/Twitter)

The intoxication of India’s historic achievement in Australia is not yet over for many. And given the magnitude, the timelessness of it, and the backdrop (read: injuries, absent Virat Kohli, India’s sheer inexperience against a full-strength Australia) in which it came, it surely needs time to sink in. But there was only this much time for those who achieved it to celebrate and relax, and team India gets back to its duty through a full-fledged home series against England.

The narrative for this series will be far more different, with most of India’s first-choice players, including skipper Virat Kohli, coming back to action. India will clearly start favorites in the series on which depends the entry to the World Test Championship finals in the coming July.

But before going that far, the series has already granted a reason for many to celebrate, given that this marks the resumption of cricket in India after an excruciatingly painful pandemic-enforced hiatus of action. Though the first clash will be held behind closed doors, there is plenty to look forward to in the coming time, as the BCCI has allowed spectators in fixtures at Ahmedabad and the immediately following encounter in Chennai.

The euphoria of crowds getting back, cricket returning to India aside, the series is crucial in every context. Not that any series which involves two of the premium Test-playing nation has anything not crucial, but Australia pulling the plugs on their South Africa tour has added that much more context in terms of the Test championship. India currently sits at the top of the pile, whereas England is the only team to have not lost a series in the championship cycle hitherto.

Any victory by a margin of two will mean an India versus New Zealand clash at Lords, however, the road for England is far tougher, who need to win 3-0, 3-1, or 4-0, against a side that has a streak of 12 Test series wins at home. The streak sounds more daunting after the addition that India has won the last 8 home Tests consecutively. However, India’s last Test series defeat, which dates back to 2012, came against – guess who – England.

Even though the face of the English Test side since then has changed considerably, they still have Joe Root, Stuart Broad, and James Anderson available. However, what England do not have has been making more clamor than what they have: Jonny Bairstow, Sam Curran, Mark Wood have been rested for the first two Tests, while Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer, Rory Burns, and the recently-tuned-in Ollie Pope, are added to the squad.

On the back of a sensational 2-0 clean sweep against Sri Lanka in their backyard – where England barely faltered – they must be charged up for the challenge. That said, the series poses a serious challenge for spinners Jack Leach, Dom Bess, and openers Zak Crawley, Dom Sibley, who all were guilty of a thing or two, they would not want to repeat against India.

Pitch and conditions

The track at Chennai has historically favored the spinners, however, the expectations are slightly different, with the spinners coming into the game more towards the latter half. There will be a considerable cover of grass on the red-soiled pitch, which will become flat as time progresses. Incidentally, the last international fixture at Chapauk was between these two sides in 2016, when hosts won by an innings and 75 runs.

Playing combinations for IND vs ENG

India

India is welcoming back quite a few of their all-time members after a horror run of injuries Down Under. While Virat Kohli is back to take his charge, he will have the services of Rohit Sharma, Ravichandran Ashwin, Hardik Pandya, and Ishant Sharma available. After promise-inducing performances against Australia, Shubman Gill will partner Rohit Sharma at the top, with Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, and Rishabh Pant following in what is a robust middle-order.

Amongst plenty of combinations, it seems that Wriddhiman Saha will need to wait outside as India has kept the template of playing five bowlers of late. Jasprit Bumrah will pick himself alongside Ishant Sharma, whereas Ravi Ashwin will lead the spin department alongside Kuldeep Yadav and either one in Axar Patel or Washington Sundar, given that Ravindra Jadeja is unavailable.

Predicted XI: Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Chetershwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (C), Ajinkya Rahane, Rishabh Pant (WK), Axar Patel/Washington Sundar, Ravichandran Ashwin, Jasprit Bumrah, Ishant Sharma, Kuldeep Yadav

England

An unfortunate slip for Zak Crawley, which has injured his wrist has ruled him out of the first two Tests. This means that England will have a different opening pair in back-after-paternity-leave Rory Burns and Dom Sibley, who will be followed by Ollie Pope, Joe Root, Jos Buttler, and Ben Stokes.

Even though the track is not expected to be a traditional Chepauk track, expect the visitors to play no less than three spinners in Jack Leach, Dom Bess, alongside all-rounder Moeen Ali, who is ready to take guard after his COVID-19 debacle. Jofra Archer is a default choice, although it remains to be seen who gets a go-ahead in Stuart Broad and James Anderson, or would England be bold enough to slot both of them in.

Predicted XI: Rory Burns, Dom Sibley, Ollie Pope, Joe Root (C), Jos Buttler (WK), Ben Stokes, Moeen Ali, Dom Bess, Jack Leach, Jofra Archer, James Anderson/Stuart Broad

IND vs ENG Head to Head 

Played – 122 | India – 26 | England – 47 | Draw – 49

In India

Played – 60 | India – 19 | England – 13 | Draw – 28

Stat Attack

Joe Root will become the 14th English player to reach the 100 Test milestone.

Ishant Sharma is only 3 wickets short of 300 Test wickets.

India has second-most wins at home in Tests (22) since 2015, whereas England has second-most wins away (12) since 2015.

The last time England won at Chennai was in 1985, and in the 11 meetings at the venue for these two sides, India has won 6, England 3, and 2 have been drawn.

IND vs ENG Broadcast Details

Match Timings- 9:30 AM (IST)

TV – Star Sports Network

Live Streaming– Disney + Hotstar