NEW DELHI, Jan. 30 (Reuters) – Joe Root and his men will be happy that Ravindra Jadeja is absent from the Indian test team, having recently shown their vulnerability to left arm rotation in Sri Lanka, said former English drummer Mark Butcher.
England won both tests in Sri Lanka but struggled to read left arm spinner Lasith Embuldeniya who won 10 wickets in the second game in Galle.
Versatile player Jadeja will miss the first two tests after breaking his thumb in Australia and left arm wrist Kuldeep Yadav is not a certainty in India’s slow bowling attack led by Ravichandran Ashwin.
“Our hitters had problems facing Embuldeniya,” Butcher, who played 71 tests between 1997 and 2004, told The Times of India newspaper on Saturday.
“England will be supported by Jadeja’s absence. India has a world-class bowling attack but Jadeja adds a different dimension to it.”
Assistant coach Graham Thorpe on Friday warned England batsmen not to exaggerate the sweeping shot against Indian spinners in the four-test run starting in Chennai on February 5. Rory Burns who is back from paternity leave.
“Burns and (Dom) Sibley should open in the first test.
“A left-right combination is practical and England will want to stay with them. If both get off to a good start, the rest of the batsmen will also gain confidence,” said Butcher.
Burns, speedster Jofra Archer and versatile Ben Stokes arrived in India earlier after being rested for the series in Sri Lanka.
The trio, after serving their quarantine period, began training at the M.A. Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai on Saturday.
The full squad will train for the first time on Tuesday afternoon, a team spokesperson said.