India vs England in Dharamsala: A Comprehensive Test Match Preview

Get ready for an exciting showdown as India takes on England in Dharamsala. Check out this comprehensive preview of the upcoming Test match, featuring key players, match analysis, and predictions.

New Update
India vs England in Dharamsala
Listen to this article
0.75x 1x 1.5x
00:00 / 00:00

Amidst the backdrop of the resplendent Dhauladhar Range, the clash of cricketing titans unfurls as India vs England takes center stage in Dharamsala for the final testament of endurance and skill. With India leading the series 3-1 and the English side eager to salvage pride, this 5th Test from March 7-11, 2024, marks more than just the culmination of England's tour—it's a battle for supremacy in the annals of cricket history.


Navigating through the narrative of pressure scenarios and setbacks like Kohli's exit and Rahul's injury, the Indian cricket team, led by Rohit Sharma, stands poised to fortify their top World Test Championship position while England, harnessing the spirit of their key players, eyes a regaining of lost momentum. This article delineates the strategic contours and statistical insights set to unfold at HPCA Stadium, a picturesque arena where history awaits and cricketing legacies are engraved.

Pitch Report and Weather Conditions

  • Pitch Report:

    • The HPCA Stadium in Dharamsala, elevated at 1457m, is known for its pace-friendly surface. Historically, the pitch has offered balance, aiding both batsmen and bowlers, with pacers likely to find assistance early on. As the game advances, spinners are expected to come into play, particularly on the third and fourth days. This dual nature of the pitch has led both teams to strategize accordingly, with India likely to field two seamers and three spinners, including R Ashwin in his landmark 100th Test.
    • Recent domestic matches at the venue have seen high scores, with multiple instances of teams surpassing the 300-run mark. This suggests a batting-friendly surface, yet the pitch is also anticipated to be a slow turner, resembling pitches in other Indian venues like Hyderabad and Ranchi. The average first innings score at the HPCA Stadium is 300, climbing to 332 in the second innings, indicating that batting second could be advantageous.
  • Weather Conditions:

    • The weather forecast for Dharamsala predicts a challenging start to the Test with rain and thunderstorms on the first day, potentially affecting the pitch's behavior. However, clearer conditions are expected from the second day onwards, with cold temperatures ranging from 12°C to 24°C. The possibility of rain returning on the final day adds an element of unpredictability, which could impact the teams' strategies. England's captain Ben Stokes has described the surface as a belter and has chosen a balanced attack with two seamers and two spinners, indicating their readiness to adapt to both the pitch and the variable weather conditions.

Key Players to Watch

As India vs England in Dharamsala approaches, the spotlight falls on key players who could turn the tide of the match. The home side contemplates whether Rajat Patidar, despite his recent form slump, will get another chance in the middle order. England's pace attack will be spearheaded by the experienced James Anderson alongside Mark Wood, who steps in for Ollie Robinson. The English spin department will rely on the duo of Shoaib Bashir and Tom Hartley.

For India, the match is monumental as Ravichandran Ashwin is set to play his landmark 100th Test, eyeing to reach 550 wickets, and Jasprit Bumrah's return is poised to bolster the pace battery. Jonny Bairstow and R Ashwin both anticipate their 100th Test appearance, with Bairstow nearing 6,000 Test runs and Anderson on the brink of 700 wickets. Ashwin, a pivotal figure in India's Test dominance, has 507 scalps from 99 matches and could equal Muttiah Muralidharan's record for most Player of the Series awards. With 17 wickets in the series, he's a joint top wicket-taker alongside Bumrah and Ravindra Jadeja.


Key Players to Watch:

  • Rajat Patidar: Despite a dip in form, Patidar might feature in the playing XI due to limited batting options.
  • James Anderson & Mark Wood: England's pace attack reshuffles with Wood replacing Ollie Robinson, partnering with the veteran Anderson.
  • Shoaib Bashir & Tom Hartley: The spin duo for England could play a crucial role on the Dharamsala pitch.
  • Ravichandran Ashwin: In his 100th Test, Ashwin is a mere five wickets away from 550 Test wickets and could equal a significant record.
  • Jasprit Bumrah: The return of Bumrah is expected to strengthen India's pace attack.
  • Milestones: Ashwin, Bairstow, and Anderson are all on the verge of personal milestones, adding extra intrigue to the Test.

England's Strategy and Line-up


In the quest to level the series, England's strategy for the Dharamsala Test is meticulously crafted to exploit the pitch conditions and the Indian cricket team's vulnerabilities. Captain Ben Stokes has calibrated his squad to balance the attack with two seamers and two spinners, anticipating the pitch to be a high-scoring 'belter'. The English side's lineup, poised to challenge the India vs England narrative, is as follows:

  • Seamers to Lead the Pace Attack:

    • James Anderson: The veteran pacer's experience will be crucial in exploiting any swing on offer.
    • Mark Wood: Known for his pace, Wood replaces Ollie Robinson, aiming to unsettle the Indian batsmen.
  • Spin Duo to Exploit Turn:

    • Shoaib Bashir & Tom Hartley: Tasked with maximizing the spin-friendly conditions expected as the match progresses.
  • Probable XI:

    • Top Order: Zak Crawley, Ben Duckett, Ollie Pope
    • Middle Order: Joe Root, Jonny Bairstow, Ben Stokes
    • Wicketkeeper: Ben Foakes
    • Spinners: Tom Hartley, Shoaib Bashir
    • Pacers: Mark Wood, James Anderson

The inclusion of Mark Wood is a strategic move following Ollie Robinson's lackluster performance in Ranchi, where he failed to take wickets. England's focus on a robust fast bowling lineup, led by Anderson and Wood, is designed to leverage the overcast conditions that can be a game-changer in Dharamsala. Under Stokes' leadership, the team is determined to showcase their evolution and resilience, with a playing XI that signifies England's commitment to progress and redemption against the india cricket team.


India's Game Plan and Key Stats

With the series already in their pocket, the India cricket team enters the Dharamsala Test with a clear vision: to solidify their standing at the pinnacle of the World Test Championship. The Indian squad, under the adept leadership of Rohit Sharma, is expected to employ a balanced attack tailored to the unique conditions of the HPCA Stadium. The game plan revolves around the strategic use of their bowling arsenal, which is likely to feature two seamers and three spinners, capitalizing on the pitch's dual nature that favors pace at the outset and offers grip for spin as the match progresses.

India's Game Plan and Key Stats:

  • Bowling Strategy:

    • Seamers: Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Siraj are anticipated to lead the pace attack, exploiting the early assistance the pitch offers to fast bowlers.
    • Spin Department: R Ashwin, in his 100th Test, is set to be the linchpin, with Ravindra Jadeja providing all-round capabilities and a choice between Kuldeep Yadav and Akash Deep to round off the spin trio.
  • Batting Line-up:

    • Opening Pair: Yashasvi Jaiswal and Rohit Sharma (c) will look to provide a solid start, with Shubman Gill solidifying the top order.
    • Middle Order: The decision between Rajat Patidar and Devdutt Padikkal remains crucial, while Sarfaraz Khan's form adds depth.
    • Wicketkeeper: Dhruv Jurel is expected to take up the gloves, bringing fresh energy behind the stumps.
  • Key Stats:

    • Series Lead: India is ahead with a 3-1 margin and is vying for a dominant 4-1 finish against the England cricket team.
    • WTC Points: Every match in the Test carries significant weight for the World Test Championship, emphasizing the importance of a victory even with the series decided.


As the cricketing saga between India and England in Dharamsala reaches its concluding act, the anticipation for a historic finish is palpable. The final Test embodies a contest of not just bat and ball, but also resilience and strategy, summarized by England's quest for redemption and India's drive to reinforce dominance. The keystones of this narrative—Ashwin's pursuit of a record-equaling feat and pivotal players like Bumrah poised to leave an indelible mark—have set the stage for what could be a cricket match etched in the annals of sporting glory.

Latest Stories