England opt to bat in Test series opener

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Birmingham, Aug 1 (IANS) England skipper Joe Root won the toss and opted to bat against India in the opener of the five-Test rubber at the Edgbaston Cricket Ground here on Wednesday.

India have surprisingly left Test specialist Cheteshwar Pujara out of the playing XI with Lokesh Rahul taking his No.3 place, and picked four quick bowlers with Ravichandran Ashwin as the lone specialist spinner.

England on the other hand, already announced their playing XI on Tuesday with leg-spinner Adil Rashid making his comeback to the longer format after a two-year gap.

Teams:

England: Alastair Cook, Keaton Jennings, Joe Root (Captain), Dawid Malan, Jonny Bairstow (WK), Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler, Sam Curran, Adil Rashid, Stuart Broad, James Anderson.

India: Murali Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan, Lokesh Rahul, Virat Kohli (Captain), Ajinkya Rahane, Dinesh Karthik (WK), Hardik Pandya, Ravichandran Ashwin, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma.

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–IANS

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