India vs England Prediction: Crawley can make hay in flat Rajkot

 | February 14 | 

3 mins read

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India answered back in Vizag to square the series at 1-1, so next we move onto Rajkot, where the 3rd Test at the Khanderi Stadium will get underway on Thursday morning (04:00). We have previewed the game and given you our suggested betting predictions. 

India vs England 3rd Test Betting Tips

  • Zak Crawley Top England Run Scorer (1st Inns) - 9/2
  • Ravindra Jadeja Top India Wicket Taker (1st Inns) - 11/5

Ben Stokes & co. came back down to Earth with a bump in Visakhapatnam, losing by 106 runs in a comfortable win for the hosts. Yashasvi Jaiswal's mercurial 209 in the first innings, followed by a Jasprit Bumrah masterclass (9-91), put the game beyond England's reach and try as they might to talk about being confident of chasing down any score, 398 was just too big of an ask.

After 10 days much-needed rest, the two sides now move on to Rajkot to do battle once again. The wicket is expected to be more batter-friendly than the previous two Tests and is described by local lad Ravindra Jadeja as flat, with the tendency to turn later into the match. It is also a lot cooler than in Hyderabad and Vizag, which should also aid the batters.

Team news

India had a huge blow with the news that talismanic batter Virat Kohli would not be returning as planned for the third Test and would miss the entire England series. However, they received positive news in the form of Ravindra Jadeja, who is fit to play at his home ground of Rajkot.

Elsewhere, it looks likely that domestic run-machine Sarfaraz Khan will be making his Test debut in the middle order, after KL Rahul was confirmed as still suffering from his quad injury.

Lastly, India could also make a change behind the stumps, with underperforming KS Bharat expected to be replaced by Uttar Pradesh keeper Dhruv Jurel.

India XI (predicted): Rohit Sharma (c), Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shubman Gill, Rajat Patidar, Sarfaraz Khan, Ravindra Jadeja, Dhruv Jurel (wk), R Ashwin, Kuldeep Yadav/Axar Patel, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj.

England have made one change to the side that lost in Vizag, recalling pacer Mark Wood to give a different option than inexperienced spinner Shoaib Bashir. Meanwhile, Jack Leach has been confirmed as out for the rest of the series.

England XI: Zak Crawley, Ben Duckett, Ollie Pope, Joe Root, Jonny Bairstow, Ben Stokes (c), Ben Foakes (wk), Rehan Ahmed, Tom Hartley, Mark Wood, James Anderson.

Match odds

As expected after their comprehensive 2nd Test win, India are yet again big favourites (4/9) to take the lead in the series, with England a big 11/4 shot to pull off another shock win. As always with England these days, the draw is the outsider at 15/2.

Zak Crawley Top England Run Scorer (1st Inns) - 9/2

Crawley has looked in fine nick at the top of the order for the tourists, getting starts in all four of his innings thus far, scoring 20 and 31 in Hyderabad, before top scoring with 76 and 73 in Vizag.

The 26-year-old also had an impressive ashes series and looks far more composed that he did this time a year ago. Now it's just a matter of staying at the crease and putting together the sort of big score his performances have merited. On a likely flat wicket, this could be the chance he has craved.

zak crawley

Ravindra Jadeja Top India Wicket Taker (1st Inns) - 11/5

India have only played two Test matches in Rajkot in their history, with the last one a massive innings defeat of the West Indies.

In that match Ravindra Jadeja was one of three first innings centurions and also took four wickets, so clearly enjoyed playing on his home ground.

I'm expecting that local know-how to come to the fore over the next few days.

ravindra jadeja

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