India seized the initiative in the series with another thrilling win on the final day of the 4th Test. Virat Kohli's men hold a 2-1 advantage going into the 5th and final Test at Old Trafford, a draw being enough for the Indian's not only to cement their place as the best Test team on the planet, but to join just three previous Indian teams that have tasted success on English shores. Check out our preview and predictions for what should be a thrilling finale to what has been an absorbing Test Series.
With the fourth test very much in the balance heading into the fifth day, Jasprit Bumrah inspired an Indian bowling attack and the visitors toppled England to take an insurmountable 2-1 lead in this series.
That was just India’s second ever Test victory at the Oval, and their first since 1971, so records are certainly here to be broken as we head to Old Trafford.
Dominance At Old Trafford
That said, England’s record here is, indeed, exceptional. They’ve gone W12-D2-L1 from their last 15 tests here, with all three failures to win coming against Australia.
While India hadn’t won at the Oval in 50 years, they have never tasted victory at this ground in this format and England will be desperate to keep that record going.
While Jimmy Anderson has a stand named after him here, his recent record would suggest that he might not be as effective as he used to at this ground.
Indeed, he’s played two tests here since 2017 and has taken just three wickets in total, with just one coming across his last three innings here against West Indies and Pakistan and with over 160 overs to his name so far this season, there’s a case to be made to not risk him with the Ashes coming up in a few months’ time.
Jos Buttler and Jack Leach have been recalled to the side, with the latter likely coming in to partner Moeen Ali instead of replacing him on a pitch that has been known to turn, and that could very much play into the hosts' hands.
England Draw No Bet
England will need to roll the dice here in order to win, and we’d expect a track very much suited to the bowlers in order to minimise the chances of a draw.
It would be a crying shame if this final test were to be disrupted by bad weather after what has been an enthralling series, though there is a high chance that rain may get in the way at times over the weekend.
Both sides have proven their powers of recovery over the last four tests, and it’s now the hosts’ turn to do so once again.
Their bowlers have been exceptional so far this series while their batting attack has grown massively as it’s worn on, and the home advantage may just see them through on this occasion.
ENGLAND DRAW NO BET