Indian cricket team are under pressure following their defeat in the first Test against England at Birmingham. The batting performance of visitors, except skipper Virat Kohli, was dismal. While the bowlers did a commendable job, the batters only managed 436 runs in the two innings, out of which 200 was scored by their skipper.
The second Test will be a crucial game, as it can either pull India back into the series, or all but confirm their series defeat. Unfortunately for the visitors, the fixture is at Lord's, where their overall record is poor, to say the least.
If India are to win the second Test, then skipper Virat Kohli will have to do what only two Indians managed before him. India have played 17 matches so far at the legendary stadium, winning two, drawing four and losing 13. But in the past, only Kapil Dev (1986) and MS Dhoni (2014) have guided the team to success at Lord's.
In order for Kohli to become the third Indian skipper to win a Test at Lord's, he must get his team selection right. He and the Indian team management dropped Test specialist Cheteshwar Pujara for the first Test, and paid heavy price as his replacement, KL Rahul, and other batters struggled.
There have been cries in social media by the fans regarding the inclusion of Pujara for the second Test. One of those who is clear about this is Harbhajan Singh. The 'Turbanator' wants a return for Cheteshwar Pujara, who was dropped for the first Test, as well as the inclusion of Kuldeep Yadav.
He was quoted by Mid Day as saying, “I don’t care who should be dropped, but the Lord’s Test playing XI must have Pujara. He is a player who can take the polish off the new ball and stay at the crease."
Bhajji further added that he also wants the inclusion of Kuldeep Yadav for the second Test. The left-arm chinaman has been a breathtaking success in the limited-overs format. But he was overlooked for the first Test in favor of Ravichandran Ashwin, who ended up being the leading wicket-taker with seven wickets at Birmingham.