New Delhi: After the humiliating 405-run defeat from the hands of Australia in the 2nd Ashes Test, England once again applied their old 'chop and change policy' by replacing Gary Ballance with Jonny Bairstow in a 13-man squad for the third match of the series.
In the last four innings, Ballance only managed to accumulate 94 runs. In his two innings at Lords he scored mere 23 and 14 runs. He did score a fifty in the first innings of the opening Test, but didn't trouble the scorers at all in the next innings by getting out for a nought.
England selectors didn't take much time to show him the doors.
However, a senior batsman in the middle order, Ian Bell, too is struggling with the bat. In fact, he scored 1, 60, 1, 11 in the last two Tests, which is not at all expected from such a senior player, in a high profile series.
May be experience is the only factor, which could have saved him from being axed, as both -- Bell and Ballance - have scored only one fifty in their last ten Test innings.
It means, if Bell does not find his form back in the Edgbaston Test starting from July 29, he could also face the axe.
After two Tests, the five-match series is equally poised as both the teams have won one match each. But psychologically, the hosts would be under immense pressure after being thrashed at Lord's, whereas, tourists would be high on confidence and would love to carry forward their form into the next game.