India tour of England: Visitors’ opening woes a concern ahead of first Test
The Indian cricket team will take on hosts England in the first of the five-match Test series at Trent Bridge in Nottingham starting August 4.
Led by captain Virat Kohli, the visitors will look to register their first Test series win in England since 2007. However, India have a dismal record in English conditions in the last three Test series, losing 0-4 in 2011, 1-3 in 2014 and 1-4 in 2018.
The outcome of the five-match Test series in the second edition of the World Test Championship will depend on the ability of Indian batsmen to cope with the swinging ball and their bowlers’ capability to exploit the alien conditions.
Team India are grappling with a series of injuries as openers Shubman Gill, Washington Sundar and Avesh Khan have been ruled of the England Test series. Furthermore, backup opening batsman Mayank Agarwal will miss the first Test after he was hit in the head by a Mohammed Siraj bouncer in the nets two days before the opening Test.
With Shubman and Mayank out, India will partner Rohit Sharma with either KL Rahul or Abhimanyu Easwaran.
Ahead of the first Test against England, the Indian Team management will be worried about the opening woes of Team India. The second-ranked Test team has failed to have a set opening pair in the longest format since Shikhar Dhawan and Murali Vijay. Interestingly, the last time an Indian opener scored a century in an away Test was KL Rahul at The Oval in 2018.
The Indian openers have the second-lowest average of 22.96 in away Tests since 2018.
Lowest average by openers in away Test since 2018
Furthermore, India have used nine different pairs since 2018 – more than any team in the same time period.
Most openers used in away Test since 2018
Indian openers in away Test since 2018
Let's also look at the numbers of all Indian openers since 2018 in away Tests
India will hope KL Rahul can put an end to their opening woes and continue his impressive form in England.
Featured photo: Adrian DENNIS / AFP