ENG v IND 2018: COC predicted India squad for the five match Test series in England

The five match Test series between England and India will begin from August 1, 2018.

Virat Kohli will lead Team India to the tour to England  | AFP

Team India will be touring England in the month of July and August 2018. The Indian team will play 3 ODIs and 3 T20Is in the month of July, and then clash with the England team in a series of 5 Tests starting from August 1, 2018, better known as the Pataudi Trophy.

The last time India toured England for a five-match Test series was under the captaincy of MS Dhoni, India had won the second Test at Lord’s to go 1-0 up in the series, but lost the next three Tests to lose the series 1-3. Murali Vijay was the most successful batsman from India, scoring 402 runs at an average of 40.20 and the best of 146. The bowling honors from India went to Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who picked 19 wickets with a best of 6/82, at the historic Lord’s ground.

M Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan and KL Rahul - three options for openers' slot

This time around, Team India will be helmed by Virat Kohli and is expected to give England a better fight to the English team. Keeping this in mind, Team Circle of Cricket has conjured up a predicted 17 men squad for upcoming India versus England Test series in August 2018.

The COC Predicted Team India squad for the England Test series is expected to have three options for the opener’s slot. Shikhar Dhawan, Murali Vijay, and KL Rahul might get shortlisted for the opener’s slot. While Dhawan and Vijay have previously toured England in 2014, it may very well be the first time for KL Rahul in England.

Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, Cheteshwar Pujara - India's middle order

The middle order of the team might have the likes of Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, and Ajinkya Rahane wielding the willow. While Pujara had an unimpressive series with 222 runs at an average of 22.20; Virat Kohli managed to conjure up just 134 runs at an average of 13.40 and Rahane slammed 299 runs with a century at the home of the cricket, Lord’s.

Hardik Pandya will play the role of the much needed fast bowling all-rounder in the team, giving Virat Kohli the flexibility in his playing XI.

Hardik Pandya- the all-rounder, Saha and Karthik - wicketkeeping options

Since the Test series will have 5 Tests and possibility of practice match(s) the team may carry two wicketkeepers with them in Wriddhiman Saha and Dinesh Karthik. While it may be the first time for Saha to keep wickets in the seaming and swinging conditions of England; Dinesh Karthik has made the tour to England in 2004, 2013 and 2017 for the Champions Trophy and as an opener in the 2007 Test series.

R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav - The spin trio

The spin bowling might see India revert back to Test favorites and regulars in Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin. With the experience of 92 combined Tests between the two star spinners, they had a not so good series in England last time, as Ashwin played just 2 Tests to pick up 3 wickets and Jadeja playing 4 Tests to pick up 9 wickets and scoring 177 runs.  Left-arm chinaman Kuldeep Yadav may also be picked as a backup to Jadeja and Ashwin and given that England batsmen constantly struggle against spin, might get a look in during the series.

Given Virat’s penchant for fast bowlers, it will be interesting to see which of the spinners get picked for the Test matches, or will it be a full-on pace bowling attack.

Speaking of pace bowling, the squad might consist of tried and tested speedsters like Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Shami and Ishant Sharma.

Bhuvneshwar, Bumrah, Ishant, Umesh and Shami - The fast bowling contingent

Out of this contingent, Bhuvneshwar, Ishant, and Shami were part of the fast bowling contingent in the 2014 series in England. Bhuvneshwar was the pick of the lot with 19 wickets, while Ishant’s mesmerizing spell of 7/74 in the Lord’s Test gave India a rare win at the home of cricket and gave them a lead in the series. Shami picked 5 wickets in 3 matches and gave valuable support to Bhuvneshwar and Ishant. This time, however, these will have the support of in-form and much quicker bowlers like Jasprit Bumrah and Umesh Yadav.

For India to win the series, it will a combination of good batting to counter the likes of Broad, Anderson, and Woakes; and some very good bowling to remove the likes of Root, Buttler, Stokes, and Bairstow.  The Test series between India and England will begin from August 1, with the first Test to be played at Edgbaston, Birmingham.

COC predicted India squad for the five match Test series in England:
Shikhar Dhawan, Murali Vijay, KL Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (C), Ajinkya Rahane, Hardik Pandya, Wriddhiman Saha (WK), Dinesh Karthik (WK), R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma

By Jatin Sharma - 02 Jun, 2018

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