Ind vs Eng: Cheteshwar Pujara may replace Shikhar Dhawan in second Test
Pujara, in all likelihood, may replace opener Shikhar Dhawan, who scored just 26 and 13 during the opening Test. He also missed a couple of crucial catches in the slips during the second innings and that allowed the England tail to flourish
India skipper Virat Kohli is set to ring in changes once again to his playing XI for the second Test against England at Lord's on Thursday. mid-day has learnt that the Indian team management is contemplating bringing back No. 3 specialist Cheteshwar Pujara, who was left out of the first Test at Edgbaston, following a poor build-up to the much-anticipated Test series.
Pujara, in all likelihood, may replace opener Shikhar Dhawan, who scored just 26 and 13 during the opening Test. He also missed a couple of crucial catches in the slips during the second innings and that allowed the England tail to flourish. The hosts won the Test by 31 runs. Dhawan has come under fire from Indian batting great Sunil Gavaskar recently for not altering his approach in Test cricket. If Dhawan is indeed dropped, then KL Rahul may take the opener's position with Pujara coming at his usual No. 3 spot.
A final call on the combinations will be taken today after the Indian team management have a final look at the Lord's pitch. There would be no changes in the bowling unit. India's bowling coach Bharat Arun yesterday expressed his satisfaction after the bowlers once again took 20 wickets in a Test match outside the subcontinent. This is the fourth consecutive overseas Test match, after three in South Africa, where the bowlers have taken 20 wickets.
"We can't ask for anything better. There is still room for improvement but the bowlers did a good job. There was a huge improvement from the first innings to the second and that was welcome," he said. "Our bowlers have done extremely well in the last game. So, we may only need to look at any change in strategy depending on the wicket." Ravichandran Ashwin will continue to remain the lone spinner in the side, it is learnt.
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