India has drawn the practice match against Essex as expected since the first test match will be played from 1st August at Birmingham. Here are some of the points of focus about Indian team for the upcoming series.
The poor form of Shikhar Dhawan
There are a lot of doubts after the poor performance of Shikhar Dhawan in the practice match. Murali Vijay will open the game for sure and KL Rahul who slammed 58 in the match may act as the partner to Murali Vijay.
Umesh Yadav ahead of Mohammed Shami
By his consistent performance, Umesh Yadav may become the pace spearhead for the team in the absence of experienced players like Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar. In the practice match, Mohammed Shami bowled 21 overs and conceded 68 runs without a wicket. Shami failed the mandatory yo-yo test in the series against England but later cleared it to give a competition to Umesh Yadav. But consistency made Umesh the first option for the selectors.
Cheteswar Pujara’s failure
Pujara’s failure to make the good use of solid start against Essex confused the selectors. At Chelmsford, he slammed only 1 and 23 from both the innings. He has a poor average of 14.33 and 22 from the recent series including six four-day matches. He may bat at No.3 instead of opening the game.
Big gain to Karthik
Dinesh Karthik made good use of the opportunity and stood as the highest scorer in the practice match. He may be considered as the man with x-factor as he slammed 82 starting to bat at No.6.
Kuldeep Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, and Ravichandran Ashwin remained wicketless even after bowling above 21 overs. Ravindra Jadeja conceded 17 runs from 2 overs and Ashwin gave away 21 runs. Kuldeep Yadav conceded 24 runs. In the first test match at Edgbaston, pacers like Umesh Yadav and Shardul Thakur along with the bowling all-rounder Hardik Pandya might be given more opportunities than spinners on account of bouncy and dry pitches in England.