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ENG vs IND, 1 T20I: Rohit Sharma focused on comeback as India face tough test against Jos Buttler’s England team


India will look to ramp up team building going into the T20 World Cup as they face high-quality opposition in England in the 3-match T20I series, which kicks off July 7 in Southampton. Rohit Sharma is back with the visitors after recovering from the Covid-19 game, which has kept him out of the One-Time Test against England in Birmingham.

Rohit Sharma was not expected to be part of the first T20I as regular Testers were rested for the series opening, but missed the Test and recovered from declining health, the captain is prepare to lead a group of young men who have had a lot of scrims.

India have not lost to England in the T20I bilateral series since a one-time loss in 2014 and Rohit will have fond memories of playing the game’s shortest format in Old Blighty. Rohit was the top scorer with 137 runs in 3 matches as India sealed the score 2-1 in 2018.

However, past records will be of little importance to India, who are looking to break the T20I combination ahead of the World Cup. While the likes of Virat Kohli, Rishabh Pant, Jasearch Bumrah and Ravindra Jadeja are not available for the first T20I, the focus will be on Suryakumar Yadav, Deepak Hooda and Dinesh Karthik as they look to seal their positions when The big names are back.

BACK TO KARTHIKKY’S DREAM

Dinesh Karthik, who was in England last year as part of the host broadcasters’ commentary panels, finished all but his place for the World Cup. Returning to the team for the first time in three years in a home game against South Africa, Karthik impressed with his improving finishing skills, which was evident when he switched to the Royal Challengers. Bangalore at IPL 2022. Karthik continued to perform well in Ireland and continued to lead in practice matches earlier this month.

Suryakumar Yadav, who made his much-awaited comeback from injury against Ireland, looks scratched but the team leadership will be hoping he returns to normal. Ishan Kishan is set to pair Rohit at the top of the order, while Deepak Hooda, newcomer from the T20I against Ireland, will also be looking to bet for a consistent spot on the team.

AXAR EYE CHECK

Bhuvneshwar Kumar will lead the bowling attack in the first T20I, while India will be interested in giving Arshdeep Singh a chance after Umran Malik plays Ireland T20Is.

This will be a tough test for Axar Patel as the left hand has struggled to make a mark despite playing against South Africa and Ireland. With Jadeja returning for a 2nd T20I, Axar hopes to make a good impact.

On the other hand, England have a point to prove in the shortest form of the game as Jos Buttler takes over as captain full-time following the retirement of Eoin Morgan.

Brendon McCullum and Ben Stokes are the town’s negotiators with their ‘Bazball’ approach in the Test and the Buttler and Matthew Motts duo will be interested in enhancing the reputation of the England whites.

England will not have Stokes and Adil Rashid for the T20Is but have enough firepower to pose a strong challenge to India. Notably, they are heading into the series after beating the Netherlands in the ODIs, but their last T20I mission – a five-game streak in the West Indies, ended with a 2-3 defeat.

ENGLAND vs INDIA, FIRST T20I MATCH

T20I 1st: Rohit Sharma (Captain), Ishan Kishan, Ruturaj Gaekwad, Sanju Samson, Suryakumar Yadav, Deepak Hooda, Rahul Tripathi, Dinesh Karthik (week), Hardik Pandya, Venkatesh Iyer, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Ravi Bishwar , Harshal Patel, Avesh Khan, Arshdeep Singh, Umran Malik

England: Harry Brook, Liam Livingstone, Dawid Malan, Jason Roy, Moeen Ali, Sam Curran, David Willey, Richard Gleeson, Jos Buttler (Captain), Philip Salt, Chris Jordan, Tymal Mills, Matthew Parkinson, Reece Topley.

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