India and England will clash against each other to draw the first blood on Wednesday when they meet for the opening encounter at Edgbaston in Birmingham. As England gear up to script history by becoming the first cricketing nation to play 1000 Test matches, India will look forward to bettering their record on the English soil.
Edgbaston, the venue for first England vs India Test, is regarded as a perennial losing venue for Asian side as the ground has hosted 50 Tests where the hosts have clearly dominated over their visiting nations. Out of the 16 Tests played here by Sri Lanka and Pakistan, none have been able to secure a win, India have also never won a Test in six attempts whereas England have lost just eight matches since 1902 on this ground.
When India played their first match at the venue:
Indian cricket team first played the third Test match against England in Edgbaston in 1967 where the visitors lost by 132 runs. India toured England to play 18 first first-class fixtures where they won two matches and lost 7 whereas 9 matches ended with a draw.
Led by Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi, India suffered their first defeat on the venue in that year as the hosts clinched the series by 3-0.
Batsmen in Edgbaston:
India managed a draw in England in 1986 under the captaincy of Kapil Dev backing on the knocks of top-order batsmen, Mohinder Amarnath and Mohammed Azharuddin. Other than that, India’s top order has always lacked the firepower at Edgbaston.
A below par average of 26.2 runs an innings by a top-order batsman reflects the lack-lustre of the Indian team at the venue. Moreover, only Sachin Tendulkar has managed to score a century in the six matches that team India has played in Birmingham.
Bowlers in Edgbaston
Bowlers have not fared well in Edgbaston as well.
Apart from Erapalli Prasanna, Kapil Dev, Chetan Sharma and Venkatesh Prasad, no other bowler has been able to take more than five wickets in an innings at the venue. Only Ishant Sharma has played a Test in Birhimgham, other pacers from current India squad are yet to play a Test in Edgbaston.
Among all the Test sides that have played at Edgbaston, Indian bowlers average 49.51, which is the worst among all nations. Former Indian pacer Sreesanth’s record of conceding 158 runs without picking a single wicket is the worst at this ground.
Edgbaston has inked a cricket history which doesn’t favour the visitors at all but the blue colts might rewrite the history books this time around.
Virat Kohli (c), Kuldeep Yadav, Murali Vijay, Ravindra Jadeja, Rishabh Pant, KL Rahul, Shikhar Dhawan, Ajinkya Rahane, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Cheteshwar Pujara, Umesh Yadav, Karun Nair, R Ashwin, Hardik Pandya, Ishant Sharma, Shardul Thakur, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah.
Joe Root (c), James Anderson, Keaton Jennings, Alastair Cook, Jonny Bairstow, Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler, Dawid Malan, Adil Rashid, Moeen Ali, Jamie Porter, Sam Curran, Stuart Broad.
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