The India vs England test series, which comprised four tests, has ended with India winning 3-1. England had begun the series with a lot of confidence after winning the very first match against the hosts. The Indians were thus a bit demotivated in the beginning, but the team jumped back into its old form in the following matches, which they won back to back.
These wins paved the way for India to enter into the finale of the World Test Championship that is supposed to be played on the 18th of June at the iconic Lord’s Cricket Ground in London. India’s brilliant performance in the test series was primarily possible due to the fantastic performances of five of India’s players – Rohit Sharma, R Ashwin, Axar Patel, Rishabh Pant, and Washington Sundar.
Let us have a look at their performances to understand how important their contributions were in this test series.
The swashbuckling batsman, who is known for being dangerous in home conditions, had an exquisite series. For a long time, fans had identified the Mumbai boy as a limited-overs specialist. Sharma has been breaking that impression for the past few years and is making his presence felt in the long format as well. In this series, he has scored 345 runs at an average of 57.98 and a strike rate of 57.5.
He scored a vital 161 in the first innings of the second test at Chennai in difficult batting conditions. In the third test too, he scored a half-century and an unbeaten 25 to drive his team to victory. The last test too, saw him anchoring the innings with a well-fought 49 as the wickets of batsmen like Pujara, Kohli and Rahane fell all around him. He has been in great form as an opener and India would be looking more towards his good performances.
The veteran spinning all rounder of the Indian team had a very good series this time. In the four test matches, he has picked up 32 wickets at a strike rate of 35.2 He has also scored 189 runs in the course of these matches. The second test was probably his best in the entire series, as he picked up 8 wickets and scored a century alongside. England batsmen were unable to read him in any of the tests, and he also picked up his four hundredth wicket in this test series, being only the fourth Indian ever to do so after Kapil Dev, Harbhajan Singh and Anil Kumble.
This was the first test series of Axar Patel and he has been on fire. He debuted in the second match of the test series and has picked up 27 wickets from three matches at a strike rate of 28.3 and an average of 10.59; the best among all Indian bowlers. He had 4 five wicket hauls in the three tests he has played and he has regularly made the English batsmen uncomfortable with his line and length.
This player has been on fire throughout the series, both as a batsman and as a wicketkeeper. In these four test matches, Pant has amassed a total of 270 runs at a strike rate of 84.11. He has a total of 13 dismissals as well to his name. He has scored one century and one half-century in the course of six innings. To add to that are his sharp dismissals, whether it be a catch or stumping the batsman out. He has improved greatly as a player in this series and fans would expect more from him now.
Sundar has been one of the mainstays of the lower batting order for the past few test series. He has played three matches in the test series and has two half-centuries to his credit. He scored a vital 85 not out in the very first match of the test series but was unable to save India from defeat. In the last match, he scored a crucial unbeaten 96 and India won the match. He has 181 runs and 2 wickets to his credit in the series. In conclusion, one of those wickets is that of Ben Stokes.
India is set to play the final of the World Test Championship. The very fact that it has so many players who have been in good form and have been playing well bodes well for the country. Fans of Indian cricket thus can be assured of its good performance in the final of the tournament against New Zealand.