Home > editors pick >

India vs England, 5th Test at The Oval Preview: India face tough task in series finale

India will be bolstered by the return of Ishant Sharma in the pace attack © Getty Images
India will be bolstered by the return of Ishant Sharma in the pace attack © Getty Images

By Nishad Pai Vaidya
Aug 14, 2014

All the promise from Lord’s tapered off with two crushing defeats at Southampton and Old Trafford. India head into the fifth and final Test against England at The Oval, low on confidence and under pressure. Skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s men have been severely criticised for their poor performances in the last two Tests and they face an uphill battle as they try and level the series at The Oval. The home side are riding high on success and happy days seem to have returned in the England camp.

Though Dhoni did not practice on Wednesday, it was only a rest, the team management assured. Ishant Sharma was seen bowling at full tilt and may return to the side. He sat out due to injury after the historic win at Lord’s and his inclusion may add bite to this attack. Stuart Binny was also seen having a hit and may just have a chance of coming back into the side. But, if it is a typical Oval surface, one may expect Ravindra Jadeja to hold on to his spot. Ravichandran Ashwin too is likely to be retained.

Gautam Gambhir returned at Manchester but failed to make a mark. However, India may just persist with him and he may open the batting with Murali Vijay. Though Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli haven’t yet found their form, they are fixtures in the side and have everything to play for at The Oval. Both batsmen would want to iron out a few flaws and come back strongly in this series. Ajinkya Rahane and MS Dhoni seem to be in good touch and have had to shoulder a lot in the middle.

With Ishant possibly coming back, Pankaj Singh may lose his spot in the line-up. Bhuvneshwar Kumar has been India’s best bowler and he would hold on to his spot. Varun Aaron brings pace and he impressed at Manchester.

England, in all likelihood, should retain the same side that won at Old Trafford. Alastair Cook kept faith with the same side in Manchester and did not make changes even though there were calls to bring in Steven Finn. England will wait on Stuart Broad’s fitness, who is likely to play with some protective gear on his face following that blow at Manchester. If he doesn’t recover well enough, there may be a change. Moeen Ali, meanwhile, will continue to be the main spinner.

England’s batsmen are back in form, with the exception of Sam Robson. He is the only player who faces some questions and the lack of runs has put pressure on him. Apart from that, it is a very happy England side that is looking to finish off on a high and deny the visitors any chance of victory.


India: MS Dhoni (c&wk), Shikhar Dhawan, Murali Vijay, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja, Ishant Sharma, Gautam Gambhir, Varun Aaron, Pankaj Singh, Naman Ojha (wk), Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ishwar Pandey, Stuart Binny, Mohammed Shami.

England: Alastair Cook (c), Moeen Ali, James Anderson, Gary Ballance, Ian Bell, Stuart Broad, Chris Jordan, Liam Plunkett, Jos Buttler (wk), Sam Robson, Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Chris Woakes.

Time: 10:00 GMT I 15: 30 IST

Catch all the coverage of India’s tour to England here

(Nishad Pai Vaidya is a Correspondent with CricketCountry and anchor for the site’s YouTube Channel. His Twitter handle is @nishad_44)

Pakistan vs Australia in UAE, 2014

Oct 30, 2014 (11:30 IST)   at Abu Dhabi

Sri Lanka tour of India, 2014

Nov 2, 2014 (14:30 IST)   at Cuttack

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Nov 3, 2014 (09:00 IST)   at Khulna

South Africa tour of Australia, 2014

Nov 5, 2014 (14:05 IST)   at Adelaide

Sri Lanka tour of India, 2014

Nov 6, 2014 (14:30 IST)   at Ahmedabad


West Indies tour of India, 2014

Nov 15, 2014  at Ahmedabad

Match cancelled

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Nov 7, 2014  at Bengaluru

Match cancelled

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 30, 2014  at Hyderabad

Match cancelled

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 27, 2014  at Hamilton

No result

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Oct 25, 2014  at Dhaka

Bangladesh won by 3 wkts


Pakistan vs Australia, 2nd Test: Australia's practice session


Tendulkar provides teaser on upcoming book

Rohit Sharma gave a fantastic account of himself: Sanjay Bangar

Yuvraj Singh flays media for twisting statements on future in international cricket

India A beat Sri Lanka by 88 runs in tour match; Rohit Sharma, Manish Pandey, Karn Sharma shine

Kevin Pietersen saga: Stuart Broad, James Anderson saddened by bullying claims

India vs Sri Lanka 2014: Rohit Sharma or Ajinkya Rahane — who should open for India?

Australia Australia tour of UAE 2014 Australia vs Pakistan Australia vs Pakistan 2014 Central Zone Duleep Trophy Duleep Trophy 2014-15 India Pakistan Pakistan vs Australia Pakistan vs Australia 2014 South Zone South Zone vs Central Zone Sri Lanka Sri Lanka tour of India 2014

West Indies crisis: Trinidad and Tobago condemns West Indies’ pullout from India tour

MS Dhoni told me there’s nothing called ‘lucky’ or ‘unlucky’: Pankaj Singh

All-India PSU T20 Tournament: Oriental Insurance defeat HPCL

Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in favour of Najam Sethi as ICC President

Justice Mudgal Committee report on IPL spot-fixing to be submitted on November 3

Highest identical scores in both innings of a Test

Younis Khan — perhaps Pakistan’s greatest batsman ever

India A vs Sri Lankans tour match: Players look to make the most of opportunities

Viv Richards: How did he perform against the West Indian quicks?

India vs Sri Lanka 2014: Rohit Sharma or Ajinkya Rahane — who should open for India?

Fan of the Day

Niharika Shah

Niharika Shah

678 Posts | 6 Fans

Video Highlights: Younis Khan century during Pakistan vs Australia 1st Test at Dubai

India A vs Sri Lanka: Fringe players look to impress

NGOs pursue education for all

Dance Basanti from Ungli: Put on your dancing shoes and practice the Basanti move!

Weight Loss Tip #59: Eat oranges to lose weight

Sensex surges 150 points in early trade to regain 27,000-mark

PricewaterhouseCoopers partners Google to offer business solutions to clients

Google X Lab working on nanoparticles to help detect diseases early

Priyanka Chopra has the best no make-up selfie on Instagram, think fans!

Lisa Haydon: I slept off midway while watching the original Shaukeen!

International programme in Animal Husbandry

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here