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My Xi for the 2nd Test

My Xi for the 2nd Test

Well that was really something. In case you didn’t know Joe Root and his merry men spent the past week outclassing the best team in the world in their own back garden. The impossible made possible by shin high full tosses, a masterclass of a double ton and an over that will go down in memory as one of the best ever. But what next?

Well England have a series on their hands and this time they’re in the lead. The second test will be at the same ground so one would expect the pitch to play a few more tricks from early on. England needs this 2nd test but Virat and his army will only get stronger after the humiliation of a few days ago. Kohli looked sublime in the 2nd innings and as i said on my twitter i’m very very scared. Nevertheless there will undoubtedly be changes to the playing Xi and rightfully so; rest and rotation are crucial in a year which is forming into a black hole of test match cricket.

Before i lay out my Xi i do feel i must say one thing. This series began with no one giving England a chance in hell and i do still believe that England will go on to lose the series (although a win or a draw isn’t off the cards) the manner in which they do that is what matters as performance is far more important than results. But if England do lose this 2nd test let us not harrang them and claim them all failures and call for heads to be chopped alongside Louis the XVI, instead let us remember what happened a mere week before and remember too that this is a young developing England side with many players on their first tour of the subcontinent.

Anyway you came here for an Xi and i won’t let you down.

  1. Dom Sibley

  2. Rory Burns

  3. Dan Lawrence

Well the top 3 remains the same because there’s little point in changing it. Burns will be no doubt furious with his 1st innings dismissal whilst Sibley will be equally as cross at missing a straight one. However if England win the toss these 2 will be more important than ever to lay the foundation as they did in the first test. Lawrence remains at 3 because there truly is no one else in the squad at the moment. I like Lawrence a lot and i wouldn’t be surprised if he makes a good contribution in this test. We all know how good Lawrence is and there should be no pressure on him to deliver.

  1. Joe Root

  2. Ben Stokes

  3. Ollie Pope

  4. Ben Foakes

The more i write this the more i realise it is truly uncontentious. Joe Root, Ok. Ben Stokes, Yup. Ollie Pope, i mean obviously. Ben Foakes? Well it has to be. Whatever you think of the Buttler situation we must all surely agree that having Ben Foakes as a backup keeper is a very good world to live in. These 3 tests provide Foakes with a good opportunity to yet again make his mark on test cricket and show everyone just how good he is. The other 3 speak for themselves and are undoubtedly England's middle order for years to come (btw if Root doesn’t get a hundred i don’t know what i’ll do with myself).

  1. Dom Bess

  2. Jack Leach

  3. Olly Stone

  4. Stuart Broad

Rest and rotation is key for England to win this series and i do feel this bowling attack is the best they can put out. Archer needs a rest having not played a test match in so long and Stone is a very suitable replacement who will give you everything (and a few beautiful on drives). Anderson is rested as i feel for England to have any shout at salvaging a draw or win of the series he will be needed 100% fit for the Pink Ball Test. Stuart Broad is probably the best replacement you could get and his resurgent self will once again be donning the karate kid headband to go with his cutters and praying mantis levels of concentration. The spin twins remain and although he tired in the first test Dom Bess showed us just what he can do and hopefully more of the same! The last test match was truly the story of Jack Leach who discovered his rhythm and what pace he needs to be bowling on these wickets and with Indias all right handed top 6 he will be crucial. Of course this does leave the tail a bit long but my prediction of a Ben Stokes ton means that this won’t really matter.

  1. Dom Sibley

  2. Rory Burns

  3. Dan Lawrence

  4. Joe Root

  5. Ben Stokes

  6. Ollie Pope

  7. Ben Foakes (wk)

  8. Dom Bess

  9. Jack Leach

  10. Olly Stone

  11. Stuart Broad

Well there we go my Xi. any disagreements? Who would you have played? Let me know on Twitter @therunoutblog1.

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