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India Vs England: Probable India XI for 2nd Test at Lord's

India Vs England: Probable India XI for 2nd Test at Lords

London, Aug 8: Already 1-nil down in the series, Team India will be eager to win as they lock horns with England in the second Test match here at the Lord's. The Indian cricket team's batting was a major let down in the opening game played in Birmingham last week.

Barring skipper Virat Kohli, no Indian batsman offered any challenge to the English bowlers in the match that tourists lost by 31 runs.

Preview: 2nd Test

Kohli and his boys have now reached the Lord's with an aim to square off the series, which many feel is still wide open.

Ahead of the second Test, India face some selection issues as well because their batting looked toothless in the opening game.

A star-studded Indian batting line-up comprising Murali Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul and Ajinkya Rahane performed terribly at Edgbaston. Their batting has been a major concern overseas which coach Ravi Shastri and skipper Kohli must be looking to improve.

Kohli blamed India's poor batting in both the innings of the first Test which the no. 1 ranked side failed to live up to the reputation. Many felt India faced the consequence of benching Test specialist Cheteshwar Pujara as the rest of the batsman struggled in front of England pacers.

Also, it remains to be seen if captain Kohli opts to go with two spinners in the second Test match or bestows the spin responsibility only with Ravichandran Ashwin.

Here's how India's Probable XI might look like:

1. Murali Vijay

1. Murali Vijay

The Tamil Nadu batsman failed to perform in both the innings of the opening Test. The team relies heavily upon the right-handed batsman to get to a solid start but the right-handed batsman scored 20 and 6.

As opening has been a major concern for India, Vijay - who is hailed as the most dependable opener in the side - will have to raise his bar and help India get to a solid start.

2. KL Rahul

2. KL Rahul

The Karnataka batsman might replace out of form Shikhar Dhawan in the second Test and could be asked to open the innings at Lord's with Vijay.

Rahul was asked to bat at no. 3 in the previous game but the right-handed batsman couldn't impress. The cricketer might just be asked to open innings with Vijay and Dhawan might be benched.

3. Cheteshwar Pujara

3. Cheteshwar Pujara

The Saurashtra batsman and Team India's regular at No. 3 was dumped by the skipper Kohli in the first match and India immediately paid the price for dropping him.

Pujara spent the last few months playing English County and was considered the most suitable batman for the series in terms of preparation and technique, yet he was dropped.

Many felt that Kohli should play Pujara in thesecond Test to give some stability in the batting order and it seems their plea might be heard.

4. Virat Kohli

4. Virat Kohli

The India captain was the lone bright star for the tourists in the previous game. In fact, Kohli was clearly the best batsman in the previous game from both the sides.

All eyes once again will be on the right-handed batsman from Delhi who is now ranked No. 1 in Tests. Kohli did almost everything right in his capacity to help India win the game but failed to get any contribution from the rest of the batsmen and eventually one more of his century ended up in a losing cause.

5. Ajinkya Rahane

5. Ajinkya Rahane

Kohli's deputy has been going through a lean patch with the bat. Rahane hasn't slammed a fifty in the last 7 innings and these are worrying signs for the Indian Team.

Before the start of the series, many felt that Rahane's form will be crucial to India's success in England. If Rahane plays well at Lord's, where he slammed a ton last time, India's chances of winning the game would increase.

6. Dinesh Karthik

6. Dinesh Karthik

The wicket-keeper batsman didn't have a good outing in the last game. He neither looked at his best with his gloves nor did he impress with his batting.

Hence, the Tamil Nadu stumper must be eager to improve his game in the second Test and justify his spot in the team. His conversation on mic stump with fellow Tamilian Ashwin, however, were amongst the highlights of the 1st Test.

7. R Ashwin

7. R Ashwin

The senior spinner's performance in the Birmingham Test was the second best thing for India. Before the start of the series, many doubted his credentials and wondered if the off-spinner is going to be as lethal he's in the sub-continent.

However, Ashwin impressed all with his variations and spin and earned the wicket of England opener Alastair Cook early in both the innings. The all-rounder couldn't do much with the bat as the team needed his batting skills as well.

8. Hardik Pandya/Kuldeep Yadav

8. Hardik Pandya/Kuldeep Yadav

There were mixed reactions about the performance of Hardik Pandya in the first game. The Baroda fast-bowling all-rounder didn't impress with his bowling exploits in the first innings and wasn't brought into the attack by skipper Kohli in the second innings.

He failed to perform with the bat in the first innings, however, in the second innings Pandya showed a lot of resilience and patience to keep his wicket intact. He might feature in India's playing XI if Kohli is inclined to play an extra pacer and just one spinner.

Kuldeep:

In case Kohli opts to go with an extra spinner then chinaman Kuldeep Yadav might get a chance. Kuldeep looked very disciplined in the limited-overs' series against England and if the pitch favours spinners then the UP spinner might get a chance to play his second Test match.

9. Mohammed Shami

9. Mohammed Shami

The Bengal pacer picked up three wickets in the first innings and rattled England's middle order. However, Shami failed to get any wickets in the second innings but he continued to bowl with discipline.

Hence, the right-arm pacer will feature in the Indian squad in the second match.

10. Ishant Sharma

10. Ishant Sharma

The Delhi speedster was the pick of the Indian bowlers in the second innings as he returned with a fifer (5/51) at Edgbaston.

Ishant too spent a lot of time playing county cricket and his experience paid off. Last time when Ishant played at Lord's, he picked up a six-for which resulted in a match-winning effort. He would be eager to repeat a similar performance.

11. Umesh Yadav

11. Umesh Yadav

The Nagpur pacer has a knack of bowling well in the nets but fails to replicate his good show on the field.

Despite having pace and variations in his arsenal, Umesh always struggles to get the perfect line and length and eventually ends up helping the opposition batsmen.

In the absence of Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar, the right-arm pacer might just get another chance in the playing XI.

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    Story first published: Wednesday, August 8, 2018, 17:28 [IST]
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