Team India’s performance in the recently concluded series of 5 test matches, 3 One day internationals and 3 T20’s was outstanding. During the whole tour, the Indian team had lot of positives and of course also some areas to work on.
In the five match test series that began on 9th November, the Indian team was supposed to have had an inexperienced team. Due to injuries to main players like Rohit Sharma, Rahane, Hardik Pandya and Wriddhiman Saha the young players like Karun Nair (triple century), Jayant Yadav ( a Century and a fifty) and test discard Parthiv Patel (2 fifties) got the chances. They rose to the occasion and performed brilliantly to sail India to win the series 4-0 despite losing the tosses. This shows that the bench strength has abilities to score big runs.
Virat Kohli was the backbone of the team scoring 655 runs during the test series. Other batsmen like Cheteshwar Pujara, Murali Vijay contributed significantly. The spin twin of Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja were outstanding proving better than England spinners. Parthiv Patel who came in place of Wriddhiman Saha did a great job with the bat and gloves. The fast bowlers Mohammad Shami, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav and Bhuvneshwar Kumar out bowled England fast bowlers. The Indian tail contributed in a significant way even when main batsman failed helping India to post big totals. India dominated the series and won it by 4-0. The England team could not play top quality spinners which led to their downfall.
After MS Dhoni stepped down captaincy from ODI format, Virat Kohli led the side in the 3 match series. Kedar Jadhav was the biggest positive from the ODI series. He scored 232 runs in 3 matches with 1 century and 1 half century. Jadhav and captain Kohli put on 200 runs for the 5th wicket during the first ODI chasing 351. Yuvraj Singh and Mahendra Singh Dhoni coming back into form in the middle order was another highlight for the Indian team, showing that age is no barrier. Hardik Pandya emerged as a dependable all-rounder during the series is really heartening. The death bowling of Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah gave the team much needed relief before the Champions Trophy. Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul and Rahane did not give the team solid starts during the ODI series posing the challenge of opening pair. The England team batsmen played excellent cricket in One day internationals but their bowling attack let them down badly.
The three match T20 series saw the emergence of young bowler Yuzvendra Chahal . Yuvraj Singh and Mahendra Singh showed their class with bat during the 3rd T20. Jasprit Bumrah Jasprit Bumrah‘s excellent death bowling was another positive during the series. Ashish Nehra experience of taking wickets in the power play overs made the life tough for England batsmen. In this series too, the opening partnership could not contribute too much exposing our weakness. IPL may be another opportunity to build at least 3-4 good openers in shorter version of the game.