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India v England: Test Preview

India is set to go up against England in the final Test match on Thursday at HPCA Stadium in Dharamshala Stadium.


India is set to go up against England in the fifth final Test match resuming on the 7th of March at HPCA Stadium in Dharamshala Stadium. The series is already sealed by India as England will seek to put a respectable scoreline and end on a high note. Regardless of the series, there are more interesting pointers that will make cricket fans across the globe look forward to this match.

Since it was fully opened in 2003, HPCA Stadium has only hosted one test match, and that came back in 2017. Now preparing for the second one after nearly seven years, there were a lot of questions if the pitch would be in good condition for this much-anticipated clash between the two cricket powerhouses. Last year during the 50-over World Cup, the stadium received heavy criticism from the players as many suggested in not a perfect fit to host a World Cup match. But leading up to a match on Thursday, the players from both nations have expressed satisfaction with the pitch and applauded the work of the groundsmen in making it look perfect. The only worrying factor is the rain predicted which can disturb the play during the five days. But that effect seems not to bother players rather than the players.

This test match has been surrounded by talks of Jonny Bairstow making his 100th test match – the 17th Englishman to achieve that feat. The 34-year-old composed batsman seems to have a love affair with the ground especially when making the 100th appearance. Even his ODI century of matches came on a similar ground. Bairstow has come far in his career having suffered a couple of injuries on his way to the top. But through resilience and a good mindset, he has managed to overcome those. Bairstow is not the only player set to go for the 100th Test match as Ravichandran Ashwin is set to call for the celebration too. The lanky off-spinner has been in good form as during the series, he became the second Indian player to go past 500 wickets following in the footsteps of the legendary Anil Kumble.

Coming to the match, England will be motivated heading to the clash even knowing they have lost the series. But a terrific win in the last match in Ranchi gave them something to cheer about. In the opening three matches, they were the second-best team in all departments and were never given time to breathe. The failure to adapt to the conditions in India let them down big time. Meanwhile, in the last match, they required a classic batting performance of Ollie Pope who snatched 198 in the second innings to contribute largely to take the team over the finish line. Plus, Joe Root and Tom Hartley were excellent with the ball during the match.

Team News

The young Indian batter Devudutt Padikkal is set to make the international test debut. Meanwhile, KL Rahul will miss the final match having failed to recover on time. The side will welcome back Jasprit Bumrah who missed the fourth match after being rested. Meanwhile, England is set to retain the same starting eleven from the last match.

Suggested Bet: India to win 1.60

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