Kolkata: Dec 5, 2012
With the four-Test series levelled at 1-1 after India’s ploy to prepare a turning track backfired in Mumbai, the hosts will seek to bounce back as they go into the third cricket Test against England here tomorrow with intense pressure on their under-performing star players to deliver before its too late.
After India’s humiliating loss in the second Test, the build-up to the Eden match was marked by a pitch row that began with a desperate Dhoni insisting for a rank-turner, which led to the local curator Prabir Mukherjee calling the Indian skipper “immoral and unethical”.
To resolve the matter, the BCCI sent East Zone curator Ashish Bhowmick to “assist” Mukherjee. The pitch for the match has drawn a lot more attention because of the controversy and it remains to be seen whether the hosts can put everything behind them and focus on the game.
India have never lost a series to England since 1984-85 when David Gower’s team had returned home with a 2-1 win but over the last one year Dhoni and Co. have lost much ground beneath their feet as they have slipped to number 5 in the world rankings from being number one at one stage.
India: Gautam Gambhir, Virender Sehwag, Cheteshwar Pujara, Sachin Tendulkar, Virat Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, MS Dhoni (c&wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, Zaheer Khan, Pragyan Ojha, Ishant Sharma.
England: Alastair Cook (c), Nick Compton, Jonathan Trott, Kevin Pietersen, Ian Bell, Samit Patel, Matt Prior (wk), Graeme Swann, James Anderson, Steven Finn, Monty Panesar.