Arjun Tendulkar bowls to Virat Kohli


We should have all the answers soon.

Joe Root has insisted that England have got "good plans" against Virat Kohli, despite the Indian captain's innings of 149 and 51 during the first Test.

With Pope being a right-handed batsman, England's top six will now only include two left-handed batters - who struggled against the spin of Ravichandran Ashwin - in openers Alastair Cook and Keaton Jennings.

Snow in Sunny's way: Sunil Gavaskar bumps into England fast bowler John Snow while taking a single in the 1971 Test match.

The England captain said that Pope will come in as a direct replacement for Dawid Malan, with Jonny Bairstow staying at No 5 and Jos Buttler moving up one place to No 6.

"I know that might be seen as quite a big jump", said Root. "For India I feel this is the most important Test". Chris Woakes will be aware of the weight of expectations on his shoulders.

How the pitch looks on Thursday morning will surely go a long way to informing that decision - on Wednesday afternoon however its appearance mostly remained a mystery, covered first by a white sheet and then by the hover cover, as part of the groundsman's final preparations.

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"It's been very hot in London for the last couple of months, there is good grass cover on it and that's required to keep the wicket together, otherwise it's going to be very hard for it to hold itself, even in the first two days".

Kohli added: "From the outside it looks very bad".

India legend Sachin Tendulkar had some words of wisdom for Indian cricket team skipper Virat Kohli ahead of the Lord's Test. However, given the conditions, it seems fairly likely that they will opt to go with a second spinner, with Kuldeep Yadav the man expected to play.

Malan made just 28 runs in the first Test in Birmingham and National Selector, Ed Smith, says Pope deserves a shot in the Test squad.

"Playing for India and captaining my country is a big honour for me and I am definitely leaving no stone unturned when it comes to that; interacting getting in there, helping the guys wherever I can from the strategy point of view as well". Those are both facts that they will be keen to turn around - whether they are able to remains an altogether different prospect.

In this summer's opening scene, when England won the knife-edge match at Edgbaston, India's batting was a one-man show.

Ben Stokes is attending the affray trial for his involvement in Bristol brawl previous year. It is Test cricket and we are playing in England where it is anyway hard.