India in England 2014 July 5, 2014

'They know how to work around techniques not suited to English conditions'

Sanjay Manjrekar analyses the strengths and weaknesses of India's top-order contenders touring England

Play 02:49
"If he tries to drive every ball he could land into trouble"

In spite of not having a sound technique, Shikhar Dhawan has shown some discipline with the way he batted in New Zealand. Avoiding driving the ball early on and being cautious while playing the short ball will work well for him in England.

Play 03:36
"He can graft and play for time"

When M Vijay plays Test cricket, he becomes more of a defensive opening batsman, which helped him succeed to an extent in South Africa. The willingness to leave balls alone outside the off stump has been serving him well. His front-foot movement is circumspect, but avoiding playing the ball on the up at the start of his innings should help him notch a couple of substantial innings on the tour.

Play 03:55
"A guy who can play the marathon innings"

Making a comeback is never easy, but Gautam Gambhir can take heart from the fact that he's got hard-earned runs on overseas tours. Judging the length accurately to leave balls outside the off stump well should help him preserve his wicket and gain confidence as his innings progresses. With his experience as an opener and ability to play spin well, he could get a look-in in the middle order if circumstances prevail.

Play 03:22
"Tremendous mental reserves"

Decisive footwork, playing the ball with soft hands, and tremendous concentration levels have helped shaped Cheteshwar Pujara's career thus far. Lack of pace in English conditions could hamper his ability to rotate strike, which he should look to improve upon. With no glaring weakness in technique and a huge appetite for runs, there is no reason why Pujara should not succeed in England.

Former India batsman Sanjay Manjrekar is a cricket commentator and presenter on TV. @sanjaymanjrekar

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on July 8, 2014, 8:03 GMT

    @Ahsan Rafiq u r spot on that these guys r weak on their stumps & tend to play balls of their stumps towards leg side. Sanjay also spotted the same weakness & Aussies found it too in Dravid but a lil too Late Amla was exposed by Paki bowler Irfan.

    But for stump aimed attack u need strong leg side field with straightish mid on that stops boundaries & singles & certainly these blocks don't have power to strike smashing 4's let alone sixes, their 4's just roll over the line. So these defensive players can easily be thwarted of runs with field placements.

  • Steven on July 7, 2014, 4:32 GMT

    Yea India can beat that English conditions but that depends on dhoni if he thinks five draws is beating the English conditions then he is misguided India have a talented team but much like Cook there's only so much skill u can show when u have a captain that is negative defensive unimaginative and not prepared to gamble I can only hope that the two captains allow us the fans to see how talented and skilful these teams can be but I highly doubt it I suspect it will be safety first cricket for 25days unfortunately

  • Sira on July 7, 2014, 2:15 GMT

    "You got 6 batsmen , 4 bowlers + 1 fast bowling all rounder. "

    Who is the "fast bowling all rounder"?! Binny? India does not have any real fast bowler. And Binny is the slowest of them all! Even Ishant Sharma who is a hit-the-deck type bowler is no threat to the batsmen because for every good ball he bowls, he sprays the next 3 or 4 around and the batsmen thrash those for runs..

  • Dummy4 on July 6, 2014, 19:31 GMT

    My Eleven- 1.Shikhar Dhawan 2.Gautam Gambhir 3.Cheteswar Pujara 4.Virat Kohli 5.Rohit Sharma 6.Ajinkiya Rahane 7.MS Dhoni 8.Ravindra Jadeja 9.Bhuvenswar Kumar 10.Mohammad Shami 11.Ishant Sharma/Pankaj Singh..!!

  • Dummy on July 6, 2014, 17:36 GMT

    Although Dhoni and fletcher know bedt which 11 they should field. I personally believe gambhir should be there to face the new ball ( ideally the 2nd new ball). Because dhawan is the only specialist leftie batsman. Plus gambhir has experience of playing in England ( county and test matches). Gambhir is also a very good player of spin. My team: rahane, dhawan, pujara, kohli, gambhir, Dhoni, jaddu,binny, shammi, bhuvi and any other pace bowler.

  • am on July 6, 2014, 16:26 GMT

    1) Vijay/Gambhir 2) Dhawan 3) Pujara 4) Kohli 5) Rahane 6) Dhoni 7) Binny 8) Jaddu 9) Bhuvi 10) Shami 11) Iswar pandeyIshanth/Varun aron

    This is much better balanced side. You got 6 batsmen , 4 bowlers + 1 fast bowling all rounder.

    There is absolutely no place for Rohit who is walking wicket , careless, arrogant, terrible fielder who missed some important catches, expensive bowler and painful batsman.

    Ashwin tough luck , depends on wicket. Unlikely that they will prepare turning track. so he has to sit out. Saha is again tough luck as Rahane has done well in SA and NZ. He has shown lot of fight and didn't throw away his wicket like Rohit sharma. Ishanth sharma is gamble. Sometimes he comes up with good performance but other times very expensive with some pretty loose balls for batsman to hit nicely. But I doubt Dhoni will go with this playing X1. Most likely he will continue with same mistakes by choosing Rohit and IShanth in these sort of playing conditions.

  • Tshego on July 6, 2014, 14:20 GMT

    @Ahsan Rafiq. What cricket you watching?! Amla is probably the best timer of a ball in world cricket.

  • wasim on July 6, 2014, 13:44 GMT

    Pujara is probably the key. Why do people say he's too defensive? Frankly there aren't too many as good as him in reversing their strike rates. His hundred in SA in the first Test stands testimony to this. 50 off 127 balls and he took just 43 deliveries for his next 50. That's a perfect No.3 for you.

    There's one area of concern though. And it's while playing offies of all people. That is when the ball doesn't spin and is heading for top of off he tends to play inside the line. Nathan Lyon and Swann have troubled him with those kind of deiveries. It would be interesting when he's facing Root and Moeen Ali. Root in particular since he doesn't turn the ball much.

  • sourav on July 6, 2014, 12:07 GMT

    I am really worried for rohit ,who seems to be a little too casual in his shot selection and dosen't have good concentration either.vijay also needs to score big runs.

  • Dummy4 on July 6, 2014, 9:09 GMT

    @Ahsan Rafiq.So its soo easy?You mean to say the only reason these guys score is that other teams haven't discovered this foolproof wisest of all strategies??Please..first of all dont compare Pujara with the other two specially Amla who has just about every shot in his armory and can score quickly if he needs to as evident from his ODI strike rate of 90+.Secondly both Dravid and Amla are greats who dont get stuck at their place due to some fancy field placing by the bowling side and Pujara is possibly one of the best young batsmen around...and yeah bowling on the pads of these batsmen is possibly the most foolish strategy of all.Chances are 6 out of 6 balls they will find the huge gap between your short and long fielders with striking ease..To sum up there is no "Easiest" way to "tackle" these batsmen.Your bowlers need to bowl very good to get these blokes out.

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