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England win toss, elect to bat

Last updated on: December 11, 2008 09:51 IST

England captain Kevin Pietersen won the toss and elected to bat in the first Test against India in Chennai on Thursday.

The Test is England's 50th on Indian soil. They are the first visiting side to attain the landmark.

England handed off-break bowler Graeme Swann his Test debut. He will team up with left-arm spinner Monty Panesar on a pitch expected to assist spin.

India recalled in-form Yuvraj Singh, who scored back-to-back hundreds in the one-day series, to take the middle-order slot left vacant by the retirement of Sourav Ganguly.

Opener Gautam Gambhir is also back in the team after missing the final Test against Australia last month due to a one-match ban.

England resumed their aborted tour after tight security was provided for the two Tests following safety concerns in the wake of last month's terror attacks in Mumbai that killed at least 179 people.

The teams:

India: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (capt), Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman, Yuvraj Singh, Zaheer Khan, Harbhajan Singh, Amit Mishra, Ishant Sharma. 12th man: S Badrinath.

England: Kevin Pietersen (capt, Alastair Cook, Andrew Strauss, Ian Bell, Paul Collingwood, Andrew Filntoff, Matt Prior, Graeme Swann, Stephen Harmison, James Anderson, Monty Panesar. 12th man: Owais Shah.

Umpires: Daryel Harper and Billy Bowden.

Match Referee: Jeff Crowe.