ESPN Cricinfo have announced their Test team of the year which expectedly features two Indians – Virat Kohli and Ravichandran Ashwin. There are a couple of surprises in the opening slot of the team with Pakistan’s Azhar Ali and West Indies’ Kraigg Brathwaite leading a strong batting lineup.
The opening stand is in good hands with a triple-centurion (Azhar Ali) and a man who carried his bat through an innings and his team to victory (Kraigg Brathwaite).
The middle order is manned by three of the four batsmen widely considered to be the best in the world at the moment. (The fourth, Kane Williamson, had a comparatively quiet year.) Jonny Bairstow, at No. 6, broke the record for most Test runs by a wicketkeeper in a calendar year.
He is followed by a five-man bowling attack that would give most batsmen sleepless nights. Two of those five, incidentally, are world-class allrounders. Would any captain be greedy enough to ask for more?”
1. Azhar Ali
2. Kraigg Brathwaite
3. Joe Root
4. Virat Kohli
5. Steven Smith
6. Jonny Bairstow (WK)
7. Ben Stokes
10. Mitchell Starc
11. Kagiso Rabada
India or West Indies? Who will win?
WI hold a 60-53 H2H advantage over IND historically but in last 10 completed games between them , IND have won 7. IND has also won all last 5 games at this venue.