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Dharamshala pitch looks like an absolute belter, says Stokes

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DharamsHala, March 6: England captain Ben Stokes called the Dharamshala pitch an absolute belter and that is the main reason why he did not pick an extra pacer for the fifth and final Test against India starting here on Thursday.
Dharamsala is colder than usual for this time of the year keeping the pacers interested but considering no grass has been left on the surface, the England batters are licking their lips.
Bringing in Mark Wood for Ollie Robinson was the only change England made to their playing eleven.
“Before we even got here, we were probably thinking it was going to be a three seamer one spinner attack but then when we saw the wicket and then saw it again today, I think going with two seamers and two spinners is probably the right call,” said Stokes in a pre-match press conference.“We felt there would probably a bit more grass on the wicket just because of where we are but overall the wicket looks an absolute belter. So playing two seamers and still having Bash (Shoaib Bashir) and Tom gives us a good mixture when you’re a little bit unsure of what it will do as the Test goes on,” he added.
India handed England their first series defeat in the ‘Bazball’ era heralded by Stokes and coach Brendon McCullum.England would like to go back home with a 2-3 series result but Stokes was quick to admit that India played the key moments better than them after their comeback win in the series-opener.“At 3-1, you think it’s not been a success but I look at it with completely different angles to that and I think we’ve definitely progressed as a team even though we haven’t got the results we wanted. You know, 3-2 sounds better than 3-1 or 4-1 and that’s obviously what we’re looking to do.
“It’s not worked out that way in terms of results but we’ve got one last push here which is great at the end of a long tour when you play five games. It’s a great ground to do it at and a lot of Barmy Army are coming in to support us this week. So, very excited,” he said.
Following their maiden series defeat, Stokes was asked if Rohit outsmarted the entire England unit, Stokes was not amused.
“I will let you decide,” said Stokes in a terse response and went on to add that he doesn’t ask people to write about him. (PTI)

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