India Vs England 2nd Test Probable Playing 11s: Will Rohit Sharma Back Sarfaraz Khan, Washington Sundar On A Possible Rank Turner At Vizag? India vs England 2nd Test to be played at Vizag. (Image: X/ANI)

India captain Rohit Sharma has big calls to take ahead of the 2nd Test vs England that starts on February 2 in Visakhapatnam. With Virat Kohli absent, Ravindra Jadeja and KL Rahul injured, Shubman Gill, Shreyas Iyer completely out of form, the batting order looks very thin. Two players who have scored tons of runs in domestic cricket – Sarfaraz Khan and Rajat Patidar – are in the squad but can Rohit take the big call of playing one or both of them in this crucial tie? On one hand, he has inexperienced but talented batters, on the other hand, he has proven batters who are currently short of runs. This is no sweet headache and it will be fascinating to see what Rohit Sharma says when he attends the pre-match press conference a day before about the possible playing 11.

Also Read | Visakhapatnam Cricket Stadium Pitch Report Ahead Of India vs England 2nd Test

Gill and Iyer have not made runs for a long time in Test cricket. History says that head coach Rahul Dravid and captain Rohit like to take small risks while being safe by covering most of the bases. Batting is one such base. Going by what batting coach Vikram Rathour said either one of them could be picked for the Test. He said that choosing who to play between Sarfaraz and Patidar will be quite tricky if only one of them has to play but the final call rests with Dravid and Rohit. Rathour also said that he is sure of his struggling batters will find a way to come out of the slump.

In all likelihood, if either of Sarfaraz or Patidar are to play, they will come in at cost of Gill, whose hards hands are not helping him tackling the spin bowling. Visakhapatnam is expected to be a rank turner and Shreyas Iyer is a quality player of spin bowling. The management might want Iyer to bat a little up at No 3 and put either of Sarfaraz or Patidar at No 4. Washington Sundar could be placed in Jadeja’s place while KS Bharat may retain his place as playing Dhruv Jurel could prove to be too much of a risk.

As far as England are concerned, their head coach Brendon McCullum had said that they are ready to play an all-spin bowling attack if the pitch at Vizag turns out to be a turner. They will not hestitate in dropping their only pacer in the first Test Mark Wood to make way for off-spinner Shoaib Bashir, who could make his debut in 2nd Test.  

India Probable Playing 11s: Rohit Sharma (C), Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shreyas Iyer, Sarfaraz Khan/Rajat Patidar, Washington Sundar, KS Bharat, Axar Patel, R Ashwin, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj, Kuldeep Yadav

England Probable Playing 11s: Zak Crawley, Ben Duckett, Ollie Pope, Joe Root, Jonny Bairstow, Ben Stokes (c), Ben Foakes (wk), Rehan Ahmed, Tom Hartley, Mark Wood/Shoaib Bashir, Jack Leach

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