Bazball is finally here as India lock horns with the aggressive England side in the mouth-watering five-match Test series on home soil. The first encounter is set to be played from January 25 at Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad. The other four matches are scheduled to take place in Visakhapatnam, Rajkot, Ranchi, and Dharamsala.
The series promises to be exhilarating considering the brand of cricket that the visitors have been playing in the longest format under coach Brendon McCullum and skipper Ben Stokes. Speaking about the selection of teams for the series opener, the home side will miss Virat Kohli, who has made himself unavailable for the first two matches due to personal reasons. Shreyas Iyer is likely to replace him at no. 4 position while the top three consist of captain Rohit Sharma, Yashashvi Jaiswal, and Shubman Gill.
It will be interesting to see how the English batters tackle the spin troika of R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, and Axar Patel. Speedster Jasprit Bumrah will be leading the pace attack alongside Mohammed Siraj. The tourists have declared their playing XI and have included three spinners in the form of Jack Leach, Rehan Ahmed and Tom Hartley. Veteran James Anderson has been dropped as Mark Wood is the only specialist seamer in the side.
Talking about the venue, the stadium hosted its first-ever Test match back in 2010 when India faced New Zealand, which resulted in a draw. The other four games have produced results, all in the favor of Asian giants India. India’s last fixture at this venue came against West Indies in 2018 when they defeated them by a margin of ten wickets.
Results at Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, Hyderabad:
Date Team Opposition Winner Margin
12 Nov 2010 India New Zealand Drawn –
23 Aug 2012 India New Zealand India Innings and 115 runs
02 Mar 2013 India Australia India Innings and 135 runs
09 Feb 2017 India Bangladesh India 208 runs
12 Oct 2018 India West Indies India 10 wickets