While many of England’s batsmen are on their first tour of India and are rather inexperienced at the international level, India will be quietly confident of their chances in the series.
Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Shubman Gill and Rishabh Pant were the stars of India’s win against Australia, but there are a number of other batsmen who’ll have all eyes on them in the upcoming series,
Here are 3 Indian batsmen to watch out for in the upcoming series against England.
Hardik Pandya may not be a part of India’s first-choice Test XI, but if he does get an opportunity in the series, he will certainly be a batsman to watch out for. Making a return to the Test squad for the first time since 2018, the all-rounder will have all eyes on him after a superb limited-overs tour of Australia.
Playing as a specialist batsman at No. 6, Pandya smashed the Aussie bowlers around the park and emerged as India’s X-factor. Although he didn’t bowl more than 4 overs in that series, he proved that his skills with the bat are enough to find him a place in any international team.
Pandya is a superb player of spin, and already has a Test century at home. He could take the attack to the England spinners in Chennai and Ahmedabad, and we might see him make a case for himself to play as a specialist batsman in red-ball cricket as well.
Since scoring a century on Test debut in 2013 against West Indies, Rohit Sharma hasn’t been able to nail down a spot in the longest format of the game. But a move to the top of the order in Test cricket has seemed to revitalise his career, and he comes into this series against England with runs under his belt and an extraordinary home record.
In 14 Tests at home, Rohit has scored 1,325 runs at an average of 88.33, with 6 hundreds to his name. Alongside new opening partner Shubman Gill, the Indian limited-overs vice-captain will look to put his opening position beyond doubt and notch up a couple of daddy hundreds against one of his favourite oppositions.
Rohit has also been in the news recently for his hamstring injury and the ensuing breakdown in communication with the BCCI. He will want to bring the attention back onto his cricket, and prove to the world that he is among the best all-format batsmen at the moment.
If Rohit Sharma has been in the spotlight over the last few months, Virat Kohli has been at the epicentre of Indian cricket for a number of years now. After watching his team register a series win for the ages in his absence against Australia, the Indian captain will be raring to go.
Kohli hasn’t scored a ton in over a year. This lean patch, along with fatherhood, will motivate him to put his best foot forward against England. He also has a stupendous win percentage as Indian skipper, and the success his deputy Ajinkya Rahane had Down Under will spur him on further.
We might witness one of the greatest series a batsman has ever had at home.