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Ben Foakes loves the “hardest challenge” of wicketkeeping on Indian pitches.

The fact that the second of five Tests didn’t take place in the “City of Destiny” seems like a missed chance. The order of the off-Broadway sites chosen for this India-England series may have been influenced by recent events. There is only a chance that the games at the top will be live.

But when both teams got to Visakhapatnam on Tuesday afternoon, there was a strong smell of fate in the Bay. It might be tied at this point next week, or, get this, England might be 2-0 up going into their break in Abu Dhabi. When they got to India, only people in the visiting party thought this was possible.

Anticipating Extremes at ACA-VDCA Stadium

The only other Tests played at the ACA-VDCA Stadium were England’s visit in November 2016. Both of them had similar conditions: the first two days were good for batting, but from day three onwards, the pitch started to spin. Like the surface that was rolled out in Hyderabad.

ACA-VDCA Stadium

People think that Friday’s pitch might be even worse because of what has happened in the past. People who went on the 2021 tour of India will never forget the three painful losses that came after their first win in Chennai. “I think all three were the worst pitches I’ve ever batted on,” Ben Foakes, who joined the team in the second Test of that series, said.

Some people who went on that tour have said it was the worst of their lives, in part because they were limited in their movements during the COVID-19 times and in part. After all, the losses were so painful and embarrassing. It’s not at all like the loose mood when Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum were in charge. These are also the thoughts that England has to deal with whatever India has planned for this week.

Foakes’ Contribution to England’s Win

With his 196 in the second innings, Ollie Pope was the face of that strategy in Hyderabad, and Foakes was, as usual, an important part of the team. Pope helped make a stand of 112 with a careful 34 off of 81 balls, which put England in the lead. Foakes had been a part of a century stand for the sixth wicket five times during the Bazball era, and all of those times the team won.

Ollie Pope & Ben Foakes

“I get about 25 of them every month,” he joked when asked what part he plays in these kinds of partnerships. “When I play for Surrey, I bat at No. 5, so I just bat, which is perfect for me. But when I play for England, I bat lower down, and I think my game works better when a batter stays in.”

“When I come in, I’ve tried to work on expanding early if we lose a couple of wickets. In my work, though, I think I’ve done best when I had to put in extra effort. I need to keep getting better there, so it fits in well with my game.

Ben Foakes Embraces Challenges

“The more extreme the conditions you know things are occasionally going to wrong so you just have to be mentally strong enough to put it out of your mind,” he stated. “I think the next one will be hard.”

“As a player, it’s nice to be in the game. You are well aware that it is a very tough spot to guard. There will be hard times or days ahead for you. Still, you’d rather play than stand there and watch the ball do nothing.

Ben Foakes Embraces Challenges

“In these kinds of situations, you have to think on your feet and learn, because it’s not like this for me.” “I’ve stayed away from spinners a lot, but I think Indian pitches are the hardest because they bounce in different ways.”

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