India vs England Test Series 2012 Preview

I have done this exercise a couple of times before. Once when India toured New Zealand in 2007 and when India toured Australia last year. I was quite close to the actual result on both occasions (1-1 in New Zealand and 0-3 in Australia).

I hope for India’s sake that no one in the team is looking at 4-0.  If they do they might end up losing the series.

I think these three things will be key to the series.

Pitches: Efforts will be made by curators to make all pitches turn -if possible – even from day 1. But what is also crucial I feel is the pace and bounce. The pitches that were used against New Zealand had some pace, so that once a batsman got beaten in the air by a spinner he could not adjust. If we get similar pitches, India should fancy their chances.

Reverse Swing: To me England have just one world class spinner. Apart from Sehwag and Gambhir, I think others in the Indian team would treat him with respect ( provided the pitch is turning ). I think it is unlikely that he runs through the Indian top-order ..  England ‘s fast bowlers would have to help out Swann and reverse-swing might be their friend.  I think Anderson and Bresnan are quite capable of getting it going. Reverse-swing in India becomes prominent in some series  (like against Australia in 2008) and is almost non-existent sometimes. If the squares are lush, then reverse swing might not appear and hamper England hugely.

Sweep: It is likely that this shot is going to be the shield and spear for most English batsmen. Apart from Prior, none of them like to leave the crease. They do have two players who have employed it with great success  in India in their coaching staff ( Flower and Gooch )who can help out the current lot. The problem to the fielding team with the sweep is that it is impossible to defend. It can be  hit anywhere from very fine to wide of mid-on.  The Indian team needs to come up with an answer for this shot.

Now let me try to predict the result of each Test.

Ahmedabad:

The wicket is known to be a sleeping beauty.  Only 5 out of the 11 Tests here have produced results. The main problem with the pitch is that it gets too slow too soon.  There is very little bounce for the faster bowlers . Even if there is turn for the spinners, they get played off the back-foot.  The only way I see a result in this match is the team bowling first using the first day life to grab some wickets. So it might be a blessing in disguise to lose the toss here.

I also feel India might be slightly be vulnerable on the first morning if  they are batting. There is a lot of talk of revenge going around and a hothead and a maverick open the innings. They might try to prove the England bowlers something and  if they are too aggressive, we might be looking at 10/2.

India win:20%   England:10%  Draw:70%

Mumbai:

I feel the Wankhede pitch will be the one turns the most. Remember this one ?   The pitch also doesn’t get very slow like Ahmedabad (at least very early ).  It  produces two results for each draw (which is fantastic by Indian standards .)So we can expect a result here and most likely in India’s favour.

India win: 60% England win:30% Draw: 5%

Kolkatta:

The history of the ground suggests almost Ahmedabad like situation (18 results and 19 draws ) but off late there have been a lot of results.More precisely, since the beginning of the nineties there have been 9 results and  draws. So we are looking at another result here. Also, one stat the Indians would be quite happy to look at is that they have won the last 5 Tests that have produced a result here. There is probably something in 100,00 people screaming for you.

India  win:85% England win: 10% Draw:5%

Nagpur:

There are  grounds  in Nagpur and the match is going to be played on the newer one. There have been 3 Tests and all have produced results.  Also, the wicket might be the fastest of  the four , which isn’t saying much. If my predictions so far are holding good, India are likely to 2-0 up by now and they will slack off.  The wicket might offer a bit for the English seamers like it did against South Africa.

India win:30% England win:40% Draw:20%

Result: 2-1 to India ( Sorry folks, no 4-0)

I have made a lot of big statements here. Let’s see how much comes true.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: