Host India aim to take series lead in pink-ball Test at Ahmedabad
Host India will continue their excellent form when facing England in the third match of the four-match Test series at Sardar Patel Cricket Stadium in Ahmedabad on Wednesday.
For India, the key will be to select their best XI for this game. Captain Virat Kohli will be looking to lead the way with the bat in this Test. With Umesh Yadav declared fit, Ishant Sharma might be resting for this game.
On the other hand, England might bring in Chris Woakes to exploit the pitch conditions in this day-night Test. The visitors have gone for a rotation policy for this four-match Test series. Moeen Ali has left the squad, while Dom Bess, Rory Burns and Jofra Archer will be rested for this pink-ball Test.
When and where to watch?
Coverage starts at 08:30 on Wednesday 24th February; watch on Channel 4 for all the live action.
The home side might make one or two changes to their playing XI; Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Siraj and Jasprit Bumrah will be first-choice pacers.
Kuldeep Yadav might also be dropped from the playing XI as the home side could add an extra batsman in Mayank Agarwal. With a batting masterclass on a turning pitch, opener Rohit Sharma will be looking to continue his excellent form. Ravichandran Ashwin smashed a scintillating ton in the second innings of the second Test match at Chennai; Kohli also chipped in with a crucial half-century for India.
Team management will hope that the experienced middle-order duo of Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara will deliver notable scores. With 116 runs in four innings, the home side will be expecting that Pujara can find his form with the bat in front of his home crowds at Ahmedabad.
Pacer Jasprit Bumrah was rested for the second Test, and he will be expected to slot into the playing XI for this game. Umesh Yadav will also be included in the playing XI after being declared fit for the final two matches.
Possible XI: Virat Kohli (captain), Ajinkya Rahane, Rishabh Pant, Shubnam Gill, Rohit Sharma, Cheteshwar Pujara, Mayank Agarwal/Axar Patel, Ravichandran Ashwin, Jasprit Bumrah, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Siraj/Ishant Sharma
The visitors will have a close look at the surface and select their playing XI for Ahmedabad Test. England can field three pacers if the curator decides to leave a little grass on the surface. Chris Woakes and Jonny Bairstow are expected to come in place of Rory Burns and Moeen Ali, who will be rested for this game.
In the batting department, the onus will be on the likes of Joe Root, Ben Stokes and Jonny Bairstow to deliver notable scores in this Test. The visitors will be relying heavily on the captain to provide another big innings in this third Test.
The onus will be on James Anderson, Stuart Broad and Chris Woakes to make early inroads in the bowling arena. Jack Leach will be the lone spinner for this day-night Test.
Possible XI: Rory Burns/Jonny Bairstow, Dominic Sibley, Daniel Lawrence Joe Root (captain), Ben Stokes, Ollie Pope, Ben Foakes (wk), Jack Leach, James Anderson, Stuart Broad, Chris Woakes/Jofra Archer.
Players To Watch Out For
The stage is set for England's premier pacer James Anderson to deliver a scintillating performance. The veteran has experience playing in these conditions and has previously bagged a five-for in a losing cause in the Ashes pink-ball Test played against Australia at Adelaide.
Betting Prediction & Insight
Host India will undoubtedly need to raise their game in this pink-ball Test due to pitch and weather conditions. With Ravichandran Ashwin's splendid effort with bat and ball, India will hope that experienced players like Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane will come to the party with the bat. Expect India to register a comfortable win over England.
|India to win||3/5 (1.6)||SBK|