IND vs ENG: 'England Have Moved From Heavy Second Favourites', Michael Atherton Predicts Series Defeat For India

IND vs ENG: 'England Have Moved From Heavy Second Favourites', Michael Atherton Predicts Series Defeat For India

Former England captain Michael Atherton believes Ben Stokes and co. have now become heavy favourites to beat India.

Aakash SinghUpdated: Thursday, February 01, 2024, 09:08 PM IST
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Michael Atherton backs England to beat India. | (Credits: Twitter)

Former England captain Michael Atherton believes the tourists' victory in Hyderabad have made them to second-favourites to heavy ones to win the series against India. The former English opener reckons the come-from-behind inflicted by England would have mentally impacted on the Indian team.

Despite conceding a 190-run lead, England put India under pressure by playing positively from the outset. Ollie Pope's 196 helped the tourists take a 230-run lead and eventually won by 28 runs after Tom Hartley took 7 wickets in the 4th innings.

In his column for The Times, the cricketer-turned-commentator believes it would be disappointing if England did not win the series from this point and India losing two vital players increases their chances further.

"England have moved from heavy second favourites to a situation where it would be a disappointment now if they did not win the series. Such an outcome, so unexpected and so unbelievable given where both teams were on first innings, must have a huge psychological impact, especially given the quick turnaround and the injuries to two of India’s key players, Ravindra Jadeja and KL Rahul. England have an excellent chance of building on their lead."

"He would have tried to whip up the crowd" - Michael Atherton on Virat Kohli

Atherton also believes Rohit's laid-back approach allowed England to get ahead in the game in Hyderabad and reckons Kohli's mere presence could have been effective, adding:

"Rohit Sharma is a captain in a very different mould from his predecessor [Kohli] — at once more laid-back, albeit not quite so passive as MS Dhoni. As England began to get ahead in Hyderabad, Kohli’s electric presence in the field, as much as anything, was missed. It would not have been hard to imagine the way he would have tried to whip up the crowd and the way his energy would have been transmitted to others."

The 2nd Test between the two sides begins on February 2nd.

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