England vs India – 4th Test preview

England can clinch a series win against India with victory in the 4th Test at The Ageas Bowl over the next five days.

After Joe Root’s side took a 2-0 lead with wins at Edgbaston and Lord’s, the number-one ranked Test team bounced back in style at Trent Bridge.

England can take an unassailable 3-1 lead down at Hampshire, but they will have to get back to playing the level of cricket they showed in the first two Tests.

27-year-old batsman James Vince has been recalled to the squad and could feature on his home ground with doubts surrounding the fitness of Jonny Bairstow, who broke a finger at Trent Bridge.

Vince has been underwhelming in his Test career thus far, averaging just 24.90 in 13 Tests, but he is the second highest run-scorer in Division One of the County Championship this season after hitting 847 runs, including three centuries.

His inclusion very much depends on the fitness of Bairstow, who is likely to relinquish the gloves to Jos Buttler and play as a specialist batsman if selected.

Either way, questions remain over the England batting line-up, with many suggesting that they are unable to adapt to a cluster of wickets in quick succession.

The team is likely to be otherwise unchanged, despite the indifferent form of the likes of Alastair Cook and Keaton Jennings.

Virat Kohli will want to keep faith with a winning team in an attempt to level the series at 2-2 ahead of a potential decider at The Oval.

He has been the standout performer with the bat so far and he will be hopeful that those around him can provide bigger contributions.

Spinner Ravichandran Ashwin will need to prove his fitness after struggling with a groin strain in Nottingham, with Ravi Jadeja and Prithvi Shaw on standby if required.


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