Team India have so far struggled in the five-match Test series against England going down 2-0 in the first two Tests at Edgbaston and Lord’s. The batsmen have failed to put in any resistance against England pacers, thus, the results have gone the other way. With many players struggling to contribute, there are many cricketers who are likely to sit out after this series.
The openers have had a disappointing tour so far with all the three yet to make a mark. The middle-order also have struggled except Virat Kohli, who brought debut century in the first Test.
Meanwhile, India will look to turn the tables from the third Test at Trent Bridge starting on August 18 (Saturday). With Jasprit Bumrah back in the scheme of things, India will receive a massive boost.
However, for many players, this can be a last opportunity to present their case ahead of the selection for the next two Tests.
Here is a list of four cricketers who are likely to sit out after this series:
Hardik Pandya, who is seen as the premier all-rounder in the side has faltered time and again. The team management have shown enough faith. However, he has failed to stand tall on it.
So far, in the two Tests matches, Pandya has managed to score only 90 runs and has picked up three wickets. Since making his debut against Sri Lanka last year, Hardik Pandya has struggled for consistency.
The stylish all-rounder needs to come good in the last few Test to save his place in the Test squad. He needs to contribute with both bat and ball if India have to turn things in their favour.
Dinesh Karthik returned to the Test squad after a gap of eight years as he replaced injured Wriddhiman Saha in the one-off Test against Afghanistan. Although he didn’t have a good game, he retained his place as Saha failed to recover in due time.
However, Karthik’s lean patch in the whites has followed him in England too. He has struggled to continue his limited overs form in the red-ball cricket. Karthik has managed to score only 25 runs in five innings with the highest score of 20 at Birmingham.
This is likely to be the last series for the experienced wicket-keeper, who has three Tests left to present his case in front of the selectors. Furthermore, he has also dropped a few catches behind the stumps which the management should note.
Ajinkya Rahane, Team India’s vice-captain, is one of the better players of this current setup in overseas conditions. However, with two Tests up, Rahane has struggled to put his best foot forward.
Rahane has managed to put only 60 runs in the last three Tests and has thrown his wicket playing rash shots. As a result, India’s middle-order has struggled to provide stability to the innings.
The Mumbai batsman needs to stand up to retain his place in the first XI and moreover, turn India’s fortune in the ongoing tour. Karun Nair, who has had some outstanding seasons in the domestic circuit, is waiting outside for a spot.
The openers have struggled to put in any resistance against the England seamers both at Birmingham and Lord’s. India have tried two combinations at the opening spot, but both have failed to deliver.
However, among the three openers tried, most of the stakes goes to Murali Vijay. Vijay has managed to score only one hundred in the last five Tests, that too against a weak opponent, Afghanistan. However, he has had a poor show in both South Africa and currently in England.
So far in this series, the Tamil Nadu opener has managed to score only 26 runs with a pair of duck in the last Test. With quality openers waiting outside, Vijay needs to return to form quickly to retain his place in the playing XI.