Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
India head coach Duncan Fletcher has announced that the national team have the ability to stun England in their upcoming five-Test series with their unpredictability.
However, Fletcher also admitted that India are a very inexperienced side. This is especially true of their bowling attack since seamer Ishant Sharma is the only bowler to have played in England before.
“Without making excuses it is a very, very inexperienced side: If you look at how many Tests have our opening batters played, how many Tests has our No. 3 has played, how many Tests have our bowlers bowled,” Fletcher said. “But it is nice that sometimes because being unpredictable they will play some exciting cricket. There are some very, very exciting cricketers in this group who would go on to be very, very good cricketers for India. They might fire from this series and there will be some very, very good cricket played.”
Fletcher also noted that India are determined to win the series, especially after they were whitewashed 4-0 in 2011.
“Reversing trends is not that important. What is important is that you go out trying to win the series. That’s what our objective is – to come here and win the series,” he said.
India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni agreed with Fletcher’s views, and added: “What you assess is how good a side the opposition is and I still think England are a fantastic side. Which means it will be a tough competition for us and they know the home conditions better than us. It’s a long series, five Test matches followed by five ODIs and one T20. Playing a series with five Test matches is something that’s entirely new for us. But overall I think it will be really good.”
Dhoni also stated that he was pleased to be playing two warm-up matches prior to the start of the Test series as it would allow the younger players to get accustomed to the conditions.
“It’s always good to have players who have played in the scenario before but as I’ve said it’s a team that doesn’t have too many players in it that have played in England,” Dhoni said. “The good thing is a lot of them have played some kind of cricket in England. There are quite a few who were part of the Champions Trophy. There are quite a few who have played in England in other leagues, not just the counties, under-age cricket, maybe the Under-19s. All that really helps but as you rightly said it will be important for those players who have not played too many games to get used to the conditions really quickly. We’re here 15 to 20 days before the first Test so that will obviously help.”