India tour of England 2018 [Preview]
It is certainly going to be a clash of heavyweights as India is all set to tour England to play 3 T20Is, 3 ODIs, and 5 Tests. Virat Kohli and co. will be keen to improve their poor record in England after losing their last Test series in 2014 by 3-1. The visitors made a promising start to the series last time around by winning the second test at Lords but it all went downhill as they lost next three consecutive tests to lose the series.
The main agenda for Virat Kohli has been to win consistently away from home. It will certainly be a great opportunity for them as England have been poor in the five-day format for the past six months. Kohli made some tactical blunders that cost them the series in South Africa. Indian management dropped Ajinkya Rahane for the first two games which proved to be the difference. Rahane is a player who holds an excellent record in overseas conditions and would certainly be keen to well in England this time around.
Murali Vijay had a good series against England four years ago and will be keen to do well in the upcoming five-match series. Cheteshwar Pujara also is playing in English County Championship for Yorkshire and will certainly be prepared for the series. Virat Kohli suffered from a neck injury and missed his stint in English County Championship. A long break from the game would certainly do a lot of good to Virat Kohli as he has been playing non-stop cricket for past couple of years.
Kohli will be keen to make amends for his poor record in England. India’s premier batsman has only scored 139 runs in 10 innings at an average of 13.40. He will be keen to put in a better effort with the bat in the coming series against England.
Jaspreet Bumrah might be a surprise package for India as he does deliver the ball at an awkward angle and could be a handful in English conditions. Bhuvneshwar Kumar will enjoy conditions in England as the ball does tend to hoop around for longer periods. Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravendra Jadeja will be keen to do well in English conditions.
On the other hand, England will be keen to make amends for their poor performances over the last six months in the Test arena. Alastair Cook will be under pressure after not doing that well in the two-match series against Pakistan. The opener will be keen to put in big performances as many pundits feel that he might quit the game down the line given his struggles over the past couple of years.
Joe Root will be focused to make sure England can get back to winning ways. England Captain certainly needs to his improve his conversion rate as he hasn’t been able to produce hundreds since Ashes series. Dawid Malan, Keaton Jennings, and Jos Buttler will certainly need to produce consistency to retain their places in the side. Buttler made a terrific comeback to the side, scoring crucial runs for the side in the two games played against Pakistan.
James Anderson is expected to be fit for series against India. The veteran is currently going rehabilitation process due to a problematic shoulder injury. Stuart Broad and Chris Woakes will be other prominent pace options for the side.
First, India will take on England in a three-match T20 series that begins from 3rd July at Manchester. The other two games will be played at Cardiff and Bristol. Virat Kohli and co. will play three-match one-day series against England as T20 series is concluded. The first game of the one-day series will be played at Nottingham. Lords and Headingley are venues for the remaining two games of the series.
Finally, India will play five-match series against England that will begin from 1st August at Birmingham. The other venues finalized for the series are Lords, Trent Bridge, Rose Bowl and The Oval. The sides will fight it out for the Pataudi Trophy as it was named after famous cricketer Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi, who played for India from 1961 till 1975.
It is anticipated to be a closely-contested series as India looks formidable with plenty of options in the batting and bowling department.