India's 5th Test prep starts today; Rohit, Dravid to reach Bilaspur on chopper | Cricket - Hindustan Times
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India's first nets session before 5th Test today, captain Rohit, coach Dravid to fly to Bilaspur on helicopter

Mar 05, 2024 02:59 PM IST

India vs England 5th Test: India will host their first training session at the HPCA Stadium in Dharamsala on Tuesday.

After a nine-day break, the Indian cricketers will return to the field on Tuesday (March 5) at the HPCA Stadium in Dharamsala. The optional practice session will also mark the beginning of India's official preparation for the fifth and final Test against England slated to begin on Thursday. India have got the second slot to train on Tuesday. After the England team completes their training in the morning session, India's practice will begin roughly around 12:30 pm.

India captain Rohit Sharma (L) and coach Rahul Dravid(AFP)
India captain Rohit Sharma (L) and coach Rahul Dravid(AFP)

"England will train at the HPCA stadium from 9:30 AM onwards. India will train at the HPCA stadium from 12:30 PM onwards," BCCI said in an official statement.

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India have already won the five-match series 3-1. The hosts staged a great comeback after losing the first Test in Hyderabad. Victories in Vizag, Rajkot and Ranchi strengthened the belief of India being near-invincible in their own backyard. Despite missing some big names like Virat Kohli, Mohammed Shami, Rishabh Pant, and KL Rahul, India managed to thwart the Bazballers with sheer quality.

Youngsters Yashasvi Jaiswal, who many believe has already put in a Player of The Series performance by scoring 655 runs in 4 Tests and Dhruv Jurel took the centrestage while seniors Jasprit Bumrah and Ravindra Jadeja put their hand up with notable performances.

Credit must also go to captain Rohit Sharma and head coach Rahul Dravid. After India beat England in the previous Test to make it 17 straight series wins at home - opener Shubman Gill said it was captain Rohit who asked the young Indian side not to lose hope after losing the series opener.

With the bat too Rohit has been pretty good. His century in Rajkot, when India lost their first three wickets cheaply, set the tone for the Test match. His attacking half-century in the tricky 192-run chase in the fourth Test was also crucial.

WTC points at stake for India and England; Rohit, Dravid to attend special programme

With World Test Championships points at stake, the last Test in Dharamsala will be anything but a dead rubber. India would look to strengthen their position at the top of the WTC points table by making it 4-1 and England, on the other hand, would like to translate their intent into results.

The Dharamsala Test will also be special for more reasons than one. It will be the 100th Test for India all-rounder Ravichandran Ashwin and England batter Jonny Bairstow.

Meanwhile, according to an Indian Express report, India coach Dravid and captain Rohit are likely to be flown to Bilaspur on a helicopter as special guests to inaugurate the Khel Mahakhumbh. Union minister and former BCCI president Anurag Thakur is also likely to grace the occasion.

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