England, India, Trent Bridge, Match Preview
India head coach Ravi Shastri (left) speaks with Virat Kohli during the nets session at Trent Bridge, Nottingham. (Photo by Tim Goode/PA Images via Getty Images)

A confident England side will look to continue their winning momentum when they square off against India in the third of the five-match Test series at Trent Bridge on August 18 (Saturday). Here, we are with the match preview.

Meanwhile, the visitors are 2-0 down in the series and will be keen to bounce back at Trent Bridge. Things look grim for India at the moment, but coach Ravi Shastri said there was not a single ‘negative bone’ in the team and called for batsmen to show some grit.

There might be a change or two, with talks of Rishabh Pant getting into the XI in place of one of the batsmen. Jasprit Bumrah, if fit, might also come in, possibly in place of Kuldeep Yadav.

The Indian batsmen have struggled to offer any resistance against the English seamers. They put on 107 and 130 in the two innings at Lord’s with Ravichandran Ashwin topping the scoring sheet. No batsman crossed fifty across innings, and there was only one 50-run partnership for the visitors in the entire match.

Murali Vijay failed once again bagging a pair. KL Rahul hasn’t been able to live upto his expectations. Cheteshwar Pujara, who came back to the first XI also didn’t offer much after an unfortunate runout in the first innings. Ajinkya Rahane, who scored an outstanding hundred the last time India played here, was also a failure.

England vs India 2018: 3rd Test, Trent Bridge - Match Preview
Here is the match preview of the third Test. Getty Images

On the other hand, England will look to seal the series at Trent Bridge. Ben Stokes returns to the first XI as the man of the match from the first Test; Sam Curran sits out.

The English bowlers have been in scintillating form with James Anderson leading them from the front.

On the batting front, Jonny Bairstow showed good form in the last Test falling seven short of a century. This will keep the English skipper Joe Root calm. However, their top-order is yet to fire so far in this series which will have the management guessing. Alastair Cook and Keaton Jennings will have the vital responsibility of giving England a good start once again.

Key Players

Virat Kohli (India): The captain was hampered by a back injury in the previous game but is likely to be fit for the third Test. India’s batting hopes rest heavily on his shoulders, and the other Indian batsmen will hope that he becomes the pivot and they bat around him.

Kohli has been the only scorer for India, and he has to lead from if they have to make any turnaround in this series.

James Anderson (England): If there has been one player who has looked infallible, it’s Anderson. All Indian batsmen, even Kohli, have found it difficult against the veteran, who completed the milestone of picking up 100 Test wickets at Lord’s.

India will be wary of Anderson, who is few wickets shy from being the highest ever wicket-taker among pacers in Tests.

England vs India 2018: 3rd Test, Trent Bridge - Match Preview
Here is the match preview of the third Test. Getty Images

Fact and Figures

  • England have won six out of the last ten matches at Trent Bridges with losing three and keeping one at a draw.
  • England and India have met six times before at Trent Bridge with the visitors winning one and finishing three games in a draw.
  • The highest score in this ground is 658 for the loss of eight wickets registered by England against Australia in 1938.
  • Australia have the lowest score in this ground of 60 in 2015 when Stuart Broad skittled through the Aussie batting.

Where to Watch

The live telecast of the third Test between England and India will be available on Sony Six and Sony HD. Further, Sony Liv will live stream the match along with Jio TV.

Form guide

England WWWLD

Pitch and Conditions

A maximum temperature of 24 degrees and a minimum of 16 degrees is expected on the first day with mild chances of rain on the second. The forecast for the rest of the days remains clear, and we should get play without interruptions.

Furthermore, the pitch at Trent Bridge is likely to assist the seamers like it has been the case throughout the series.

England vs India 2018: 3rd Test, Trent Bridge - Match Preview
Here is the match preview of the third Test. Getty Images

Stats and Trivia

  • India’s top three are averaging 9.83 in this series, their worst in series of two Tests or longer. Not too far behind, on No. 4, is the 15.5 in South Africa earlier this year.
  • Trent Bridge is one of the rare grounds where Stuart Broad has scored more runs than Alastair Cook, 389 to 351. Although Cook took his only Test wicket – Ishant Sharma, four years ago – it is not his favourite venue. He averages 22 here, and his top-score is 50.
  • Broad needs 12 runs to become only the fifth man in the 400-wicket club also to have scored 3000 runs. Those ahead of him are Shane Warne, Kapil Dev, Shaun Pollock and Richard Hadlee.
  • One of that 15-member 400-wicket club, Broad’s mate James Anderson is not likely to threaten the 3000-run mark but is only 11 wickets shy of becoming the leading wicket-taker among fast bowlers. Only Glenn McGrath’s 563 strikes are ahead of him.
  • At Edgbaston, both sides dropped four catches each. While it is near impossible to calculate the damage caused – partnerships are formed, momentum is lost, bowlers get tired – the reprieved batsmen went on to cost England 154 runs, and India 86.
  • Ishant Sharma is five short of 250 wickets. Only Jacques Kallis, quite understandably, has taken longer to get there. Among others who bowled more regularly than Kallis, Daniel Vettori is the current slowest, who earned his 250th wicket in his 81st Test, three fewer than what Ishant has played already.

Predicted XI

Sam Curran will have to make way for Ben Stokes, who is returning after the court trial. Stokes provided England a confident start with a magical spell at Edgbaston. He will look to pick precisely from there when he takes the field at Trent Bridge.

It was one of the most difficult decisions I’ve had to make as captain. It’s about us as a squad delivering over five games and on this occasion, Sam is unfortunate to miss out,” Root said on the eve of the third Test.

England: Alastair Cook, Keaton Jennings, Joe Root (c), Ollie Pope, Ben Stokes, Jonny Bairstow (wk), Jos Buttler, Chris Woakes, Stuart Broad, James Anderson, Adil Rashid

After the Lord’s humiliation, the management is aware that they need to make drastic changes against England to be alive in the series. They are likely to slot in debutant wicket-keeper batsman Rishabh Pant following Dinesh Karthik’s poor form.

Furthermore, fit-again Jasprit Bumrah will return to the first XI as Kuldeep Yadav makes his way out. There has been a lot of debate over Hardik Pandya’s spot in the place. The management might be tempted to play an extra batsman in his place.

India: Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (c), Ajinkya Rahane, Rishabh Pant (wk), Hardik Pandya, Ravichandran Ashwin, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma,  Jasprit Bumrah

Match Preview: Match Prediction

England will be high on confidence after securing two wins from two games. But the players are aware that it will be a new day, and they need to start from the scratch.

India on the other hand, will have to put in a spirited effort at Trent Bridge after good bashing in the last Test.

As a result, the hosts are quite likely to wrap up the series at Nottinghamshire.

Ankush Das

I am an accountant by qualification, my parents thought their obedient son would study further to become a CA, but I had other things in mind. An ardent Cricket fan is following his passion and making a living watching and working around his favorite sport.