India eager to spoil Cook

London – Ravi Shastri has promised India "will not throw in the towel" when they confront England in the fifth Test at The Oval starting on Friday despite having lost the series.

England's 60-race victory in the fourth Test at Southampton gave them an impregnable 3-1 lead in the five-game contest.

It also meant India, for all of them they are the best in the world – the test side, now had won only one of their last nine series outside of Asia.

The Oval crash has become more important due to the fact that it will be the last appearance before the international withdrawal of Alastair Cook, England's all-time leading Test-scorer of the event.

But Indian coach Shastri, who helped his country win a 1986 series in England, is determined that tourists ruin the party.

"This is a team that will not throw in the towel". Shastri told reporters at The Oval on Wednesday.

"You will leave and you will not compete and you are not on the first flight home, rest assured that that is exactly what we will do".

Frustration for India, which lost 2-1 in South Africa this year, is that two tests in the current series. – A 31-race loss in the first match at Edgbaston and the Southampton crash might well have gone their way, especially if captain Virat Kohli had enjoyed more support with the bat.

Kohli is the leading hitter in the series with 544 runs in an average of 68, including two hundred, but will end up on the losing side.

"I think you have to be mentally tough," he said. Shastri when asked how India could improve his visitor record.

"We have run teams around the world and we have competed, but now it's not about competing, we have to win games from here."

It was a point echoed on Thursday by Ajinkya Rahane, India's vice-captain, who said that he and his fellow senior hitters, with the exception of Kohli, had not been able to back an impressive attack.

"I think we, as a batting team, fall short," admitted Rahane.

"When you're on tour you work so hard … then (if) one department performs well, it's the other group's responsibility to back them up."

India could bring Ravindra Jaedeja, player on the left, for her first game of this series, with her rotating partner Ravichandran Ashwin fighting for form and fitness lately, while middle-order hitter Hanuma Vihari is a candidate for a debut in the Test at the expense of the off-road Hardik Pandya.

England, meanwhile, confirmed on Thursday that it would launch the same XI that played at Southampton, but with Jonny Bairstow passed fit to hold aft wicket, snapping a finger behind the stumps during India's 20-3 win in the third Test on the Trent Bridge.

Jos Buttler, white-ball player from England, who was a substitute for Bairstow in the middle of the third round and once again in Southampton, returns to his role as specialist Batter Test.

But Joe Root denied that England was being excessively complacent about the desire of his Yorkshire teammate Bairstow to remain as a game ranger.

"No, definitely not," he said. "I made it very clear that if he is going to be the game guard of the test match he will have to keep working very hard."

Root will return to bat in his favorite position of the number four after Moeen Ali, a winner of the third test with his out of turn, climbed to number three in the second chance in Southampton.

The long-term question about who replaces Cook at the top of the order remains, as does England when James Anderson – who needs only four more terrains to match Australia's great Glenn McGrath record of 563 for the Most of the test wickets taken by a pace bowler – he finally calls it a day.

Meanwhile, 33-year-old left-hander Cook hopes to put a low scoring streak behind him in The Oval.

"Four-one sounds better" than three-two. But if I could play a good inning, it would be fantastic, "he said.

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