“These games are im­por­tant in our prepa­ra­tion for 2019 be­cause it al­lows us time to play around with the bal­ance of the side.”

“With that ma­jor tour­na­ment [World Cup] com­ing, it gives you an op­por­tu­nity to test your bench strength, try out fringe play­ers and test their char­ac­ters as well.” Shikhar Dhawan, Ro­hit Sharma, K. L. Rahul, Shreyas Iyer, Suresh Raina, M. S. Dhoni (wick­et­keeper), Di­nesh Karthik, Yuzven­dra Cha­hal, Kuldeep Ya­dav, Wash­ing­ton Sun­dar, Bhu­vnesh­war Ku­mar, Jasprit Bum­rah, Hardik Pandya, Sid­darth Kaul, Umesh Ya­dav.

We have world­class play­ers who can adapt,” he added.

World Cup win­ner Madan Lal sec­onded Vengsarkar. “When you travel, it is im­por­tant to do well in those con­di­tions and earn an op­por­tu­nity to play for In­dia reg­u­larly. This is their chance,” he said.

Bowlers and flat wick­ets

For a long time, Eng­land was the only des­ti­na­tion that of­fered neu­tral wick­ets. But to­day, 300 is the new 250, and the car­nage at Not­ting­ham as Eng­land scored 4■1 ex­posed the meek nature of the wick­ets. Out­of­favour speed­ster Varun Aaron, who spent more than a month in the English county for Le­ices­ter­shire, re­vealed the chal­lenges of bowl­ing on flat wick­ets. “The guys (in in­ter­na­tional cricket) are scor­ing 400 as if it is a joke. In the Royal One­day Cup (the do­mes­tic tour­na­ment in Eng­land), 300 is an


All­round of­fer­ing: Ben Stokes can bloom any mo­ment.

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