India get off to a positive start in England
India recorded a morale boosting win in the second practice match of their long English campaign scheduled till the first week of September. Dhoni’s men chased down 142 runs in the second innings to beat Derbyshire by 5 wickets in the 3-day tour game and are all set for the 5-match Test Series against Alastair Cook’s side.
India used the entire 18-man squad in the two warm up games they played in, giving a fair amount of practice to all the players. The first warm up game was played against Leicestershire which was curtailed due to rain and ended in a draw. Despite the match being abandoned, the Indian batsmen got to bat for a reasonable amount of time, getting accustomed to the English conditions in the process.
India’s star batsmen and Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper, Virat Kohli, got off to good starts in both the matches but missed out on staying longer at the crease. Virat made 29 and 36 in the two warm up games and looked solid until he was dismissed. The two practice games will be a healthy wake up call before the real ‘Tests’ arrive. The 25-year old will be raring to go out and perform well for his team. Kohli is one of the main pillars of this new-look Indian team, and the onus will be on him to make it count in his very first Test series in England.
Another promising sign for India is paceman Varun Aaron. He was asked to ball a few short spells in the game and the RCB speedster really cranked it up. Aaron can be lethal in English conditions if he’s able to swing the ball at great pace. If selected, he could become an integral part of the bowling line up as he gives the team the element of raw pace; something which has eluded Team India for quite some time!