Both teams view the match as of great importance as their performance in the third Test in Leeds may determine the course of the series. Virat Kohli, who is aiming to take the lead in the series by winning at Leeds, is unlikely to make any big changes to the Indian team.
In terms of performance in the series, India lags behind the bowling department in batting, especially in the middle order. The fact that senior players like Virat Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane are not able to score big scores is a minor concern. Pujara, India’s most loyal Test batsman, is the most disappointing. Though there is an opinion that Suryakumar Yadav should be considered instead of Pujara, India is unlikely to make such a change. Their performance in the middle order will be crucial for India in this series.
Meanwhile, it is learned that the spinners will get support from the pitch in Leeds in the last two days. As a result, Indian spinner Ravichandran Ashwin, who was ruled out of the first two matches, may return to the team. In the first two Tests, Ashwin’s replacement Jadeja batted well but did not take any wickets.
Though Shardul Thakur has recovered from injury, India will play the same four pacers who played the Lord’s Test in the third Test in Leeds. Mohammad Shami, Jaspreet Bumra, Ishant Sharma and Mohammad Siraj are all in good form. Apart from bowling in the Lord’s Test, it is a relief for India to be able to shine in batting as well. The performance of the openers also gives great hope. The Rohit Sharma-KL Rahul duo have been batting well in the series.
The last Test between India and England was played in Leeds in 2002. This is the first time that players from both teams are currently playing in a Test between Leeds. In this situation, it will be crucial for the senior players in the team to rise with the opportunity. The performance of the batting line-up will be crucial in England where bowlers have more support.
The injury threat of players is a big headache for England, who are trailing in the series. Mark Wood, who had a great performance in the Lord’s Test, was ruled out due to injury. In addition to injury, batting is also a headache for England. The England team is currently in a state of over-reliance on captain Joe Root. The rest of the players got off to a good start and were seen throwing wickets. Another drawback is that they are not able to keep pace with the excellent Indian bowling line-up. But Joe Root and his team will be sure to give a proper response to the defeat at Lord’s today.