Former Indian opener Aakash Chopra believes the absence of Ben Stokes will hand India a huge advantage ahead of their five-match Test series against England. Stokes has taken an indefinite break from cricket citing mental health issues.
England struggled in their last Test series against New Zealand and given the inexperience of their top order, Stokes’ presence would have been a massive boost for them. However, with the star all-rounder confirming his absence, Aakash Chopra feels India will greatly benefit.
In a video on his YouTube channel, Aakash Chopra explained how Ben Stokes’ absence would impact the England vs India series.
“India will benefit a lot from Ben Stokes’ absence. He is as good as two players in one. In Tests, he plays like a proper batsman coming in at No.5 or No.6 and has the ability to change the course of a match. He is a wicket-taker with the ball and is also an excellent slip fielder. So his absence is good news for India.”
India might be able to dismiss the tail sooner in Ben Stokes’ absence: Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra also feels that the one long-standing problem with the Indian team has been their inability to dismiss the opposition tail quickly. This was on display during their last tour of England as well as the English tail added some valuable runs on most occasions to frustrate the Indians.
But with Stokes’ absence, Chopra believes if India could make inroads into the England batting line-up, they could expose their tail sooner and restrict the runflow successfully.
“The pressure will be a bit less on India and they might be able to dismiss the tail sooner. England will be a bit weakened even before the series has started.”
The first Test between England and India will be played at Trent Bridge, Nottingham from August 4th.