Former England Monty Panesar has opined that Team India could hand the hosts a 5-0 thrashing if the tracks during the upcoming series offer turn. After the World Test Championship (WTC) final against New Zealand, starting from June 18, India will take on England in a five-match Test series.
Both teams met earlier this year in India, and the hosts turned around a 0-1 deficit and thrashed the visitors 3-1. Panesar feels the Indian spinners could exploit England’s weaknesses if the surfaces offer some assistance. He also pointed out that the conditions would be warmer when the Test series begins in August.
“Five test matches are in August where we will expect warmer conditions. Indian spinners will come into the game, India have a chance of 5-0,” Monty Panesar tweeted. A Twitter user rubbished his claim, saying: “It is not easy at all for India in seaming conditions, 5-0 with England that is big joke.”
To this, Monty replied: “Will it seam in August? It tends to spin at that time of the year. If the wickets turn in August every chance (India can win 5-0).” Panesar also added that he expects green pitches for the series against New Zealand and drier wickets for the games against India.
“I expect green pitches v NZ and we can see the depth of English cricket. In August, I expect drier wickets. IMO (In my opinion) it favours India,” he said in another tweet. New Zealand are already in the UK, preparing for the two-match Test series against the hosts, starting with the first Test at Lord’s on June 2.
Panesar also backed the Indian pacers to do well against an inexperienced England top-order. He highlighted the fact that England are heavily dependent on their skipper Joe Root to score runs.
“[If] Joe Root scores big England win. [But] You expect Joe Root to score all the runs?”
“India have seamers to exploit inexperienced English batting. The top order will be England’s issue,” Panesar added.
The five-match series will start in Nottingham on August 4. For the records, India have not won a Test series in England since 2007.