India against England: Ollie Robinson And Shoaib Bashir Replace Rehan Ahmed and Mark Wood For England Fourth Test

Fast bowler Ollie Robinson and off-spinner Shoaib Bashir replace Rehan Ahmed and Mark Wood as England make two changes to play India in Ranchi. Follow the fourth Test starting at 4 a.m. on Friday.

India against England: Ollie Robinson And Shoaib Bashir Replace Rehan Ahmed and Mark Wood For England Fourth Test

India against England

England have made two changes to their lineup for the fourth Test against India in Ranchi, with fast bowler Ollie Robinson making his maiden appearance of the series and off-spinner Shoaib Bashir being recalled.

Robinson and Bashir replace Rehan Ahmed and Mark Wood, respectively, in the XI.

Captain Ben Stokes may be able to bowl after recovering more quickly than expected from left knee surgery in November of last year, following the Cricket World Cup.

Stokes, who presently has 197 Test wickets, has not bowled since the second Ashes Test at Lord’s in July, so his comeback would be a welcome boost with his side behind 2-1 in the five-match series.

Bashir, who took four wickets on debut in the second Test in Vizag, joins fellow frontline spinner Tom Hartley and part-timer Joe Root in the bowling unit.

England’s lineup for the fourth Test

1 Zak Crawley, 2 Ben Duckett, 3 Ollie Pope, 4 Joe Root, 5 Jonny Bairstow, 6 Ben Stokes (captain), 7 Ben Foakes, 8 Tom Hartley, 9 Ollie Robinson, 10 James Anderson, 11 Shoaib Bashir.

England must win in Ranchi to make the last Test in Dharamshala on March 7 a series decider, with a 1-0 advantage wiped away by straight defeats in Vizag and Rajkot.

The visitors were thrashed by 434 runs in the third Test last week, getting dismissed for 319 in their first innings after falling from 224-2 and then being blown out for only 122 in their second attempt.

Stokes called the Ranchi pitch “interesting” on Wednesday, saying, “I’ve never seen anything like that before.”

“If you looked down one side of opposite ends it looked different to what I am used to seeing, especially out in India,” he went on to say.

“It looked green and grassy up in the changing rooms, but then you go out there, it looked different – very dark and crumbly and quite a few cracks in it.”

Jonny Bairstow remains in England’s middle order despite averaging 17 in the series, with a top score of 37 and knocks of zero and four in Rajkot the last time out.

India has rested top seamer Jasprit Bumrah, while KL Rahul (injured) and Virat Kohli (personal reasons) are out.

Stokes: Bairstow has money in the bank, Anderson is a role model, and Robinson provides a solid alternative.

England captain Stokes takes on Bairstow…

“If batters struggle for a short period, it will be scrutinized.

“I don’t look at it that way; instead, I consider what Jonny [Bairstow] has given throughout the years since I became captain.

“He has money in the bank and is an excellent player. He has played an important role in what we have accomplished.”

England captain Stokes takes on Anderson, who has 696 Test wickets…

“If you’re a young fast bowler, Jimmy Anderson is your ideal role model. Not only does he have a large number of wickets, but he can continue to play at his age.

“To be approaching 700 Test wickets as a fast bowler is remarkable.

“He’ll know that but I don’t think that will be at the top of his mind for this week, just because of where we’re at in the series.”

England captain Stokes takes on Wood and Robinson…

“You look at Mark as a player, especially with the ball, and you want someone like that to be completely focused.

“His most valuable attribute is his ability to bowl quickly, and the work he put in the past week was huge.

“You want to retain players like them on the pitch, performing at that level. Bringing Robbo in offers us tremendous alternatives, especially with this wicket.

“I feel like the spin will be assisted but I also feel having two seamers gives us a good chance purely because of Ollie Robinson’s release height and his relentlessness with his areas.”

England captain Stokes on Ahmed…

“When you consider everything Rehan has had to deal with in terms of visas and other issues, I believe he has handled the entire trip well.

“He’s someone who seems much older than his age. Losing out on sports is disappointing. However, when we keep the selection process constant, as we do, and provide detailed reasoning for our decisions, Rehan understands why we chose that option.

“In the three games that he has played, he has gone out and attempted all that we have asked of him, which is why he is on the squad.

“I think any other team, he’s batting higher than No 8 and I think how he has taken the game on with the ball is something I’ve been very, very impressed with.”

India against England: Ollie Robinson And Shoaib Bashir Replace Rehan Ahmed and Mark Wood For England Fourth Test

England Test Series in India 2024

  • England beat India by 28 runs in the first Test in Hyderabad.
  • Second Test, Vizag: India defeats England by 106 runs.
  • Third Test: India defeats England by 434 runs.
  • Fourth Test: February 23-27 (Ranchi)
  • Fifth Test, March 7-11 (Dharamshala)

Source: Sky Sports

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