India head coach Rahul Dravid has joined with the rest of the squad ahead of the postponed fifth Test against England at the Leicestershire County Cricket Club, the tourists’ base of operations for the week. The match, which is part of the five-Test series that was played last year, is scheduled to begin on July 1. Dravid had previously been with the T20I squad led by Rishabh Pant during India’s five match series at home against South Africa while the Test squad, which consists of all-format regulars such as full-time captain Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli and Jasprit Bumrah, travelled to England before the end of the series.
The players had previously been training at Middlesex’s training ground in London but have since shifted to the Uptonsteel County Ground in Leicester.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Tuesday shared photos of Dravid giving a team talk before the nets session. This will be Dravid’s second overseas tour in the position, having led the team on their tour of South Africa earlier this year.
The fifth Test was postponed last year due to Covid-19 cases within the Indian camp. India currently lead the series 2-1 and their tour of England this year will include three T20Is and as many ODIs after the Test match.
A lot has changed for both teams since the series was postponed last year. Virat Kohli having stepped down as India’s captain earlier this year and Rohit took over. All-rounder Ben Stokes, meanwhile, has taken over as England captain after Joe Root was sacked.
Both sides also have new head coaches. While Ravi Shastri stepped down last year and Dravid took over for India, Brendon McCullum was appointed as England’s Test coach after Chris Silverwood was sacked last month.
There will be some notable members missing from the Test, prime amongst them KL Rahul who is out with an injury, and potentially Ravichandran Ashwin, who it was revealed contracted Covid-19 and will be in a race against time to feature in the Test match beginning on July 1.
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