Team India retained the Border Gavaskar Trophy by beating Australia in their backyard. However, there is still a lot of work pending for Virat Kohli & Co. Earlier, New Zealand automatically qualified for the ICC World Test Championship at Lord’s.
It all happened after Cricket Australia postponed their tour of South Africa. With no chance of rescheduling the tour in this cycle, Kiwis qualified for the WTC final. On the other hand, India should be at their best to beat England at home.
They will resume their battle in red-ball cricket when they will host England in the upcoming home series. After the four-match Test series, both teams will play as many as 5 T20Is and ODIs. However, India’s complete attention and focus will be on the Test series.
In order to book a ticket to Lord’s, Team India should beat England by 4-0, 3-0, 3-1, 2-0. If Virat Kohli’s team wins the series by any of the scorelines, then they will lock horns with New Zealand in the final.
New Zealand became the first team to reach the inaugural ICC World Test Championship final. The all-important final will be held in England at Lord’s from June 18 to 22, with June 23 as the reserve day.
Chepauk wicket to assist spinners
The first two Tests will kick-off at Chepauk Stadium. The typical Chepauk wicket is certain to assist the spinners to a great extent. Moreover, the pitch also doesn’t break up that easily. The Indian pitches are usually flat and it is a paradise for the spinners.
The spinners will benefit a lot and after which the pacers will take control of the game. As the Test match progresses, the pitch will start losing its sheen and will go on to become much softer than before.
At that time, this will totally disrupt the surface which will lead to an unexpected bounce. Thus, it will make things tougher for the batsmen to go about their business. Taking all these factors into account, the team management decided to go for three spinners against England at Chepauk in the first test match.
A BCCI source has quoted, “The pitch is a typical Chepauk wicket. No English feel or anything. In this humidity, you need to have grass on the wicket so that it doesn’t break up that easily. This wicket will help spinners as it always has been the case.”
Why Axar Patel may get the nod to play the first Test
With that being the case, Axar Patel is most likely to get the nod for the first test. He will join experienced off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin and chinaman bowler Kuldeep Yadav in the spin unit.
Moreover, England struggled to tackle the left-arm in their just-concluded tour of Sri Lanka. English batsmen fell prey to left-arm spinner Lasith Embuldeniya as the latter accounted for 15 dismissals in the two Tests.
This is one of the main reasons why Axar Patel would get the nod. Also, there shouldn’t be any confusion to pick between Washington Sundar and Axar Patel. Although Sundar is a good batsman where he showcased his mettle in Australia, Axar can bowl really well combined with turn and pace. Also, he can bat well at No.8.