England favorites to win the 5 th test says the former Indian opener

Opinion Friday 01/July/2022 10:23 AM
By: Anis Sajan, Vice Chairman, Danube group
England favorites to win the 5 th test says the former Indian opener

A new era under Ben Stokes, and the coach Brendon McCullum, has been characterized by a more aggressive style and England will go into Friday’s re-arranged test against India with the same approach they displayed in their series win against New Zealand, who are the reigning World Test Champions.

The arrival of the new coach Brendon McCullum and the captain, Ben Stokes who both are known for their flamboyant and aggressive approach has changed the attitude and mindset of the English Test side and it was on display from the first ball bowled at Lord's in the first game in the new era said, Wasim Jaffer.

When I asked him whether England will play the same style of cricket against India to which Wasim Jaffer replied, it won’t be that easy for England as India has a better bowling line-up with the likes of Bumrah, Siraj, and Shami but England would come hard at India.

Jonny Bairstow will be the player to watch out for who is a very dangerous batsman when he walks out to bat at no. 5 or 6 and starts striking the ball and demolishes the opposition’s plan like how Adam Gilchrist would use to do.

Waseem feels that Cheteshwar Pujara who is the most senior-most member of the team would have been a better option compared to Bumrah who lacks experience of captaincy in any form of cricket when I asked him who should lead the team.

To my opinion, I feel Virat Kohli should have been the captain for the test given that India leads this series because of his captaincy to which Jaffer replied, “I also feel that it should have gone to Virat Kohli but I am not sure if he would have taken it because of what has happened in the past but Cheteshwar Pujara should have been the option as this series holds a lot of importance as India could win a series after the last win in 2007."

Wasim also gave the example of MS. Dhoni who had never led a team before leading team India and went on to become the most successful captain in the world. Similarly, Bumrah is intelligent and has a great cricketing sense but not the right time to give him the captaincy in a high stake game.

Sharing his batting order, he recommended that Cheteshwar Puja should open the batting with Gill as he would be the right man to play Anderson at the top followed by Hanuman Vihari at 3, Virat at 4, and Shreyas Iyer at 5.

Iyer has scored a lot of runs in first-class cricket and averages over 50+ with a few double hundreds to justify his selection and plays attacking cricket that India would need. Rishabh Pant at 6, Jadeja at 7, Ashwin at no. 8 with the ball going to spin and should be picked over Thakur because of his experience and someone who can bat and 3 seamers Bumrah, Shami, and Siraj will make a solid line-up.

To conclude he said India should go with the mindset to win the match and not to draw and also believes that the momentum is with England with the brand of cricket they have been playing are the favorites to win the match.