“The wickets in the nets have been a bit green and had good pace and carry too. I don’t know if that’s anything to go by or whether it’s a bit of a trick,” England pacer Mark Wood said during a virtual interaction on Friday. England batsman Zak Crawley too felt that England will have an edge if conditions favour the seamers. “We have grown up with those conditions trying to play the ball late in seaming conditions so you would say we would be more adept at it than the Indians,” Crawley said.
However, it will be interesting to see if the wicket retains its green cover by the time the clash starts on February 24. Former England skipper Allan Lamb believes giving a wicket helpful for the seamers will be playing into the visitors’ hands. “I don’t think there will be too much going in favour of the pacers in Ahmedabad. I feel the wicket there will aid turn as that’s India’s strength. Their spinners are high-class and better than their English counterparts who are good but short of international experience,” Lamb told TOI.
The 66-year-old, who featured in 79 Tests and 122 ODIs for England, feels that Joe Root’s side can make a comeback only if their batsmen come to the party. “England will need their batsmen to fire. Only when you post a 400-plus on the board — will your bowlers have something to bowl at. England’s hopes in the series rest on their batsmen. Not just Root, others too have to score big if we nurse hopes of winning the series,” said the former England skipper.
With teams that have won the toss in the series batting first, Lamb feels that trend will continue in the last two Tests as well. “The toss has become a crucial factor in this series. Winning the toss is half the battle won. Teams are looking to bat first, pile a sizable total and then call the shots. That’s what will be the case in Ahmedabad as well,” Lamb mentioned.