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England will hope for another spirited show against India Getty Images

No one gave an eye to England against India ,after their horrible show against Bangladesh in the 1-1 drawn Test series. England batsmen were outfoxed by Mehedi Hasan, was expected to bow down against the spinning trio of Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja and Amit Mishra. England to everyone’s surprise shot back at all the criticism and exhibited bravery. Alastair Cook, who is already a legend in English cricket was on his fourth Indian tour along with an inexperienced side, filled with exuberance and aspirations. England took on a vibrantly lead India under Virat Kohli at Rajkot, and came out with much more than just their heads’ held high. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: India vs England, 2nd Test at Visakhapatnam

Cook under his wings had the likes of Joe Root, Stuart Broad, Ben Stokes, Jonny Bairstow, Moeen Ali to battle against an in-form Indian side. With youngsters Zafar Ansari and Haseeb Hameed included in the playing XI, England outfit demonstrated exemplary skills, which enabled his side come out a much better unit than the one that started the match.

Lets have a look at wither Cook and England team management will eye any change to their playing XI or not –

Top Order:Cook and Hameed are all set to once again lead the charge in batting as the pair was instrumental in giving England steady starts. Cook who was poor against Bangladesh showed his love for India again cracking his 35th Test ton in the second innings. Cook was unfazed about the conditions and played the ball on their merit. Cook’s form will be of paramount in the remaining matches if they want to have any shot at winning a Test.

Playing just his first Test, Hameed impressed one and all. After getting out foxed by Ashwin in the first innings , he very swiftly brought a change in their batting stance which negated any spin the offie had. Hameed’s temperament against the likes of Mishra and Jadeja was pleasing to see. Hameed’s footwork against spin bowling exhibited the young lads quickness and skills.

Coming in at No.3, playing his 50 Test will be Joe Root. Root hit a splendid 124 off 180 balls to help England build a base to stabilize their stay in India. Root who love-affair with India started with on his debut when on to strike his first century in Asia at Rajkot. Root already has a gain over Kohli in this series, will look to topple the Indian skipper records. Root’s most valuable asset is that his can steer batsmen as per the situation of the match.

Middle Order: Ben Duckett will be under the pump to perform after repeated failures with the bat. Duckett in the first innings fell victim to Ashwin’s spin-web, Duckett’s constant struggle to come on the front-foot and back-foot has been his downfall. With Gary Ballance sitting on the bench, Duckett would like to cantered runs in the middle. England’s most underrated yet over performing player, Moeen Ali will once again be expected to anchor the lower middle order batting. Moeen more than the conditions relies on his ability to understand the situation and act accordingly. Moeen can anchor when needed, while going all guns blazing is also in his arsenal. Moeen’s skill and guile with the ball will only add depth to England’s bowling attack.

England cricket’s box office player, Ben Stokes proved again that why is he a force to reckon with. Stokes struck a belligerent 128 off 235 runs which enabled England put a brave face. Stokes along with Moeen saved England’s sinking ship with their team at 281 for 4 Stokes in second innings came out to up the ante and that is what he did, scored 29 from 29 balls. Stokes with the ball was handy as his usage of the old ball was too good for the Indians to hit.

England cricket’s box office player, Ben Stokes proved again that why is he a force to reckon with. Stokes struck a belligerent 128 off 235 runs which enabled England put a brave face. Stokes along with Moeen saved England’s sinking ship with their team at 281 for 4 Stokes in second innings came out to up the ante and that is what he did, scored 29 from 29 balls. Stokes with the ball was handy as his usage of the old ball was too good for the Indians to hit.

Jonathan Bairstow,who was expected to shine with the bat, did his bit with the bat and showed glimpses of his talent. Bairstow’s 57-ball 46 provided impetus to the team score of 537 runs in their first innings. Another thing that Bairstow need to improve drastically is his wicketkeeping skills.

Lower order: Chris Woakes was expected to pick up easy wickets against India, given the form he was running in. Woakes knowledge of using the ball new and old adds another dimension to his bowling style. Woakes at Rajkot was always switched on unlucky not to get any wicket. Woakes ability with the yield the bat, adds much needed strength to their batting.

England’s new and upcoming spin bowler and a handy batsman, Zafar Ansari proved that he can provide his team with the runs when asked. Ansari’s 83-ball 32 were worth in gold, knowing how near England got to winning the match. Ansari did manage to pick up wickets but was heavily taken for runs. Ansari must let the ball dictate terms when it is in his hands.

Playing his 101-Test, Stuart Broad will be eager to pick up wickets with the ball, which eluded him in the first Test. Broad was good in parts but was unable to make inroads like he is known to. Broad will shoulder responsibility in the absence of James Anderson.

Adil Rashid was the star bowler for England, picking seven wickets in his kitty. Rashid bowled a good line and focused on keeping the ball always on the batsman’s body. Rashid used flight and guile to the near perfection. Rashid if given more spin friendly condition could be a sight to feast on.

England’s likely XI : Alastair Cook (c), Haseeb Hameed, Joe Root, Ben Duckett, Moeen Ali, Ben Stokes, Jonny Bairstow (wk), Chris Woakes, Adil Rashid, Zafar Ansari, Stuart Broad.

(Vishal Mehra is a reporter at CricketCountry, currently tripping on #BlackMirror and #TheFlashS03, enjoying his weekly dose of anime, monthly viewing of sitcoms, daily playing cricket once every few hours, and also venturing into table-tennis. He can be followed on Twitter @capturethecatch)