Team India is trying its best to prepare for the second Test against England. The second match between the teams will begin on February 2 at the Dr. YS Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium in Visakhapatnam.
India suffered a poor 28-run defeat in the first Test as they failed to reach the target of 231 runs. The Rohit Sharma-led team would now be eager to come back in the second match and level the series at 1-1. For this, preparations are in full swing as they were seen working hard in the network session.
PTI reports claimed that the Indian batsmen were seen practicing sweep shots, which was a powerful weapon for England in the first Test. India’s batsmen barely played that shot. Only captain Rohit Sharma resorted to sweep shot but he could not play a big innings.
With the second Test against England just a few days away, the Indian batsmen, particularly Shubman Gill and Rajat Patidar, were seen practicing both the conventional and reverse sweep. The duo mainly focused on that while other batsmen played that shot on time.
Reports suggested that both Rajat Patidar and Sarfaraz Khan could be in line to make their debut for India in the second Test. Both batsmen were seen practicing catching at slips. Both players were named replacements for the team’s frontline hitters.
While Patidar joined the team as a replacement for Virat Kohli, who opted out of the two Tests, Sarfaraz Khan was called up to fill KL Rahul’s void. With India’s batsmen struggling to get going against spinners, making a debut against the domestic giants could be a game-changer for them.
Apart from this, reports also claimed that English batsman Joe Root was seen batting left-handed in the nets. This could address the Indian spinner’s challenge. After that, he practiced sweeps and reverse sweeps.
Spinner Jack Leach did not participate in training, so it is possible that he will not participate in the second match. In his place, debutant Shoaib Bashir could make his debut. England’s spinners put in a strong performance in the first match and would hope to do the same in the next match.
Not something you can try: India batting coach Vikram Rathour
India’s batting coach Vikram Rathour was asked about his team’s batsmen playing sweeps and reverse sweeps. Responding to this, he stated that they play in a traditional way and sweeps do not come naturally to them.
Vikram Rathour supported the Indian batsmen to play to their strengths using their feet. He believes that also if the batsmen can hit some shots, it will be good for the team. Speaking to reporters, he explained:
“It’s not something you can try. You need to practice it. If you have more injections it is beneficial. We play in a traditional way. Our strength is to go straight and use our feet. We need to do it well and if we can make some shots, it will always be a good addition.”
India would be eager to win in the second game. A loss here would put them on the defensive in the series. It remains to be seen what strategy they will apply for the next match.