New Delhi: With just a day left for the much-anticipated five-match Test series between India and England, all eyes would be on the new aggressive skipper Virat Kohli to see whether he can motivate his boys to take revenge from the Alastair Cook led-side for the last three series defeats.
It is after quite a while that India are playing a five-match Test series at home. Having already started the home season on high with a 3-0 clean sweep of New Zealand, anticipations and hopes would be at the paramount from the hosts who topped the ICC Test rankings displacing Pakistan from the coveted position.
On the other hand, England, who recently tasted their first Test defeat against Bangladesh in Dhaka, would look forward to keep behind the embarrassment and put up a good show in India. However, it would be a herculean task for Cook to re-instate the confidence in his team when they would take on the No.1 Test side, that too in their den.
India`s head coach Anil Kumble has already stated that the team would not be taking the opposition lightly, especially considering the fact that there are players of the caliber and quality of Joe Root, Cook and James Anderson besides others, who can easily take away the game on their own.
Kumble`s concern can also be backed by the recent Test history of the two teams. India have lost the last three Test series (2011 and 2014 in England and in 2012 series at home) to the current No. 4 Test-ranked side.
India made their Test debut against England, playing the first international match at Lord`s back in June 1932, losing by 158 runs.
It took India seven defeats and seven draws before they registered their first Test match win over England, beating the visitors at Chennai in February 1952.
So far, the two sides have locked horns 112 times in Test matches, out of which England have won 43, India 21 and the rest 48 have been draws.
If we go by the records in their home conditions, out of 57 Tests played in England, India have won only six, lost 30 and the other 21 have been drawn.
On the other hand, out of 54 Tests played in India, England have won 13, lost 15 and the other 26 have resulted in draws.
Let us see the results of the Test series between the two nations from 2000 onwards:
England in India (2001/02): India won the three-match series 1-0 after defeating England by 10 wickets in the first Test at Mohali. The other two Tests played at Ahmedabad and Bengaluru (then Bangalore) ended in draws.
India in England (2002): The four-match series ended with 1-1. England defeated India in the first Test at Lord`s by 170 run. The second Test at Nottingham ended in draw. India won the third Test by an innings and 46 runs at Leeds and the fourth and the final Test at the Oval ended in a draw.
England in India (2005/06): The three-match series ended with 1-1. The first Test at Nagpur ended in a draw, the second at Mohali was won by India by nine wickets and England won the last Test by 212 runs at Mumbai.
Pataudi Trophy (India in England, 2007): India for the very first time since 1971 won a series in England. The three-match series was won by India 1-0. The first Test at Lord`s ended in a draw. India won the second Test at Nottingham by seven wickets and the third and the final Test ended in a draw.
England in India (2008/09): India won the two-match series 1-0. The first Test played at Chennai was won by India by six wickets and the second Test played at Mohali ended in a draw.
Pataudi Trophy (India in England, 2011): England thrashed India 4-0 in the four-match series, having won the first Test at Lord`s by 195 runs, the second Test at Nottingham by 319 runs, the third Test at Birmingham by an innings and 242 runs and the last Test at The Oval by an innings and eight runs.
England in India (2012/13)India tasted a heart-wrenching 2-1 series defeat in their home conditions against England. India won the opening Test at Ahmedabad by nine wickets but suffered successive defeats at Mumbai and Kolkata respectively. The final Test ended in a draw.
Pataudi Trophy [India in England] (2014)England won the five-match series 3-1. The opening Test played at Nottingham resulted in a draw. The second Test at Lord`s was won by India by 95 runs. But the remaining three Tests were won by the hosts.
So, now in 2016, India`s run-machine and the aggressive skipper Kohli would be aiming to take revenge and better the records from an Indian perspective. Considering the recent form of the two teams, the cricket pundits have already put their money on the No. 1 ranked Test side.
So, be ready for an engaging two months of fierce Test battle between India and England.
Schedule of India-England five-match series:
First Test in Rajkot (November 9-13)
Second Test in Visakhapatnam (November 17-21)
Third Test in Mohali (November 26-30)
Fourth Test in Mumbai (December 8-12)
Fifth and final Test in Chennai (December 16-20).