England hardly faced problem in an opening slot all these years. Right from Sutcliffe-Hobbs, Sutcliffe-Hutton, Boycott-Amiss to Strauss-Trescothick and Strauss-Cook they never had anything to be concerned about at the top of the order.
Andrew Strauss retired in 2012, leaving a big void which is yet to be filled. Since Strauss’ retirement, no one has made the opening slot his own to partner Cook. England tried Nick Compton, Joe Root, Micheal Carberry, Sam Robson, Adam Lyth, Moeen Ali and Alex Hales but none of these have shown a sense of permanency at the top of the order.
In the midst of all this Haseeb Hameed, a 19-year-old boy from Lancashire, who has been looked as a bright prospect has been roped in the squad for partnering Cook. It will be an acid test for the 19-year-old guy against the likes of Ashwin and Jadeja who has never played in conditions like these before.
The right-hander made his debut for Lancashire in August 2015 against Glamorgan and since then he has been a regular feature in his county side. His first-class numbers are good for a 19-year-old. In a short career of 20 matches, he has close to 1500 runs at an average of 48 with 4 tons against his name. Also, he will be the youngest opener when he will be presented his test cap at Rajkot.
However, times ahead are not going to be easy for the young man. With two seasoned campaigners, Ashwin and Jadeja operating in tandem, he will have to be at his best to tackle them. However, England will be hoping that he comes good for them.