Taking a dig at the Indian approach ahead of the Old Trafford Test, former England skipper Andrew Strauss has said that the visitors not only need more aggression but will also find it extremely difficult to win a Test match with four bowlers in their playing eleven. (Also read: 'Poor' Trent Bridge pitch gets official warning)
"I think India have a big problem if they are playing with only four bowlers. That is a mistake. I don't think they can win matches with just four bowlers," opined Strauss. (Also read: Jadeja vs Anderson Big Fight: Behind the Scenes)
"I understand they want to select a team based on the conditions and pitch. But considering those factors, they got it completely wrong at the Ageas Bowl. The pitch at Southampton has a reputation of turning towards the end of the match. So I was very surprised to see them not play Ravichandran Ashwin there," said Strauss. (Also read: India need Mohammad Shami the bowler to turn up at Manchester)
Having a win under their belt at Lord's, Mahendra Singh Dhoni and company decided to go with an extra batsman in the third Test at Rose Bowl. The hosts drew level in the five-match series and Strauss was surprised by the moves of the Indian thinktank.
"I was even more surprised that they decided to play an extra batsman and leave out Stuart Binny. It showed that they were negative and had a defensive mindset. They were trying not to lose the match and when you play with that outlook, more often than not, you will get beaten," he added.
India lost by 266 runs at Southampton after earning a 95-run victory in the second Test and Strauss lauded the English effort.
"It was a good comeback after that Lord's defeat. That was a bitter pill for England to swallow because everything was in their favour and they squandered that chance. So there was real pressure on them at Southampton and they put on a near-perfect performance."
"From the moment they won the toss and elected to bat, they put India under pressure. Their captain (Alastair Cook) is back in form, Ian Bell is getting runs, James Anderson and Stuart Broad bowled better as well. If you have a perfect template of how to win a Test match, that was it," said Strauss.