India vs England, 4th Test: Match preview

India vs England

The fourth test of the Anthony de Mello Trophy 2020-21 is supposed to be held from the 4th to the 8th of March, 2021 at the Narendra Modi Stadium of Ahmedabad. This is the last test of the four test series that is being played by India and England in this England tour of India.

The two teams have been known for being the fiercest cricketing opponents in the world and thus have attracted a lot of attention in the course of the series. India has been leading the series 2-1 till now, and the visitors have lost the last match by 10 wickets to India after a brilliant bowling performance by the two Indian spinners Ravichandran Ashwin and Axar Patel.

The last match ended in two days and was the shortest test match ever played since 1935. While India will be looking to seal the series win with yet another win, England will be looking to bounce back by registering a win in the last match. Let us have a look at what the match has to offer the viewers.

Tough Opponents

England was the first opponent that India had played its first test in 1932. The two nations have a long and illustrious history of playing against each other. England had made a promising start to this series after securing a 227 run over India in Chennai.

However, India bounced back strongly in the next two tests, being ably supported by its two spinners Axar Patel and Ravichandran Ashwin. England was initially confident of playing well in this series, especially after its wins against Sri Lanka prior to its tour of India. However, after the first test, things have gone consistently downhill for England.

In the last test, only one of its batsmen could score a half-century. None of the other batsmen could even come near a half-century. This match is particularly important because it will decide which team will get selected to the finale of the ICC Test Championship 2021-22 which supposed to take place in June this year at Lord’s. After losing in the second and the third test, England has been out of the competition for the finale. If England wins in Ahmedabad, then India’s hopes of qualifying for the finale will be dashed. Australia will qualify instead for the finale.

In fact, for the same reason, England will have the support of its arch-rival, Australia in the upcoming match. On the other hand, if India wins in Ahmedabad, then it will qualify for the finale of the Test Championship. New Zealand has already qualified for the finale of the Test Championship and thus only one spot is left in the finale. These factors have boosted the rivalry between the two teams.

Squad News

Both the teams have been training vigorously for the upcoming test. Indian pace bowler Jasprit Bumrah has not been available for the last test due to certain personal reasons. Either Mohammed Siraj or Umesh Yadav shall replace him in this test match.

As per the recent news, Umesh Yadav is more likely to receive the call. On the other hand, the England team could recall off-spinner Dom Bess for this match with either Stuart Broad or James Anderson making way for him. England has understood the need for spinners on the turning tracks of India and has thus taken such a decision.

Probable Playing XIs

India: Shubman Gill, Rohit Sharma, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, Rishabh Pant (WK), Axar Patel, Ravichandran Ashwin, Mohammed Siraj, Washington Sundar, Ishant Sharma

England: Dominic Sibley, Zak Crawley, Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Jonny Bairstow, Ben Foakes (WK), Ollie Pope, Jack Leach, Jofra Archer, Stuart Broad, James Anderson

Pitch News

There has been a lot of criticism about the pitches that have been prepared in India for the matches. Former English players like Michael Vaughan have even gone ahead to suggest that the ICC should intervene in the making of the pitches. Indians have denied such claims, and the vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane has even pointed out that Indian players have never complained about the pitches abroad. As per the available knowledge, the pitch for the fourth test will be similar to that of the second test in Chennai and the third one in Ahmedabad; it will be a spinning track.

Conclusion

This is the final match of the series. As per the recent news and happenings, it is an important match and the fans will get to see good, competitive cricket between two of the best teams in the world.