India to face India A ahead of Test series in England
Team India will play two four-day warm-up matches against the India A side in July ahead of their five-match Test series against England. The matches will be played in Northamptonshire and Leicestershire.
According to the schedule, the first game will begin on July 21 at Wantage Road and the second at Grace Road from July 28.
The first Test will begin at Nottingham from August 4. The Test series will come to an end on September 14, the scheduled last day of the fifth Test at Emirates Old Trafford.
“We are really proud to be hosting such a prestigious fixture,” Leicestershire chair Mehmooda Duke said. “It will be a unique opportunity for cricket fans from across the region to see these global stars in action. We expect demand for tickets to be huge.”
Tickets for the two India vs India A matches will go on sale in March.
Some of the biggest names in international cricket are coming to The County Ground this summer! 👀
We're excited to announce India will visit The County Ground in July for a 4 day warmup fixture against India A.
— Northamptonshire CCC (@NorthantsCCC) January 27, 2021
This is going to be the first time that India will play internal warm-up matches rather than against county opposition in an overseas tour.
It is understood that India have taken inspiration from Australia, who opted to do the same in their preparation for the 2019 Ashes, following a gradual decline in the status of tour matches over many years.
But before the return series in England, India will first host them for a four-match Test series on home soil, with the first match scheduled to begin in Chennai from February 5 (Friday).
Meanwhile, apart from facing the Indian national side, India A will also have matches against Derbyshire and Essex as part of their tour to England. They will play a four-day warm-up match against a ‘First-Class Counties Select XI’ at Grace Road from July 12 as well.