Ajinkya Rahane will go at No.4 once Virat Kohli goes away: Sunil Gavaskar
Virat Kohli to miss out on three Tests with India in light of his paternity leave.
Updated - Dec 12, 2020 6:50 pm
Indian skipper Virat Kohli will be missing the last three Tests of the four-match Border Gavaskar Trophy to be with his wife Anushka Sharma during the birth of their first child. The skipper will only feature in the inaugural pink-ball Test of the marquee series, starting from December 17 in Adelaide. Thus, it is a major concern for the management to find the batsman who can potentially fill in Virat’s shoes in the purest format of the game.
It is almost confirmed that India’s Test vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane will don the captain hat in the last three Tests in the absence of Kohli, but there are various speculations on who would come to bat at Number 4 after Kohli’s departure. Former Indian captain Sunil Gavaskar also stated his stand on this matter, saying that the stand-in captain Rahane can come out to bat at Number 4.
Sunil Gavaskar and Ricky Ponting discuss about the appropriate Number 4 for India
While interacting with former Australia captain Ricky Ponting on 7 Cricket, Gavaskar revealed that Rahane would be willing to bat at Number 4 in Virat Kohli’s absence while KL Rahul or youngster Shubman Gill can get a chance to play at Number 5 for India in whites.
“Virat’s obviously there only for the first Test then you’d expect Rahane to take over (as captain) but they (India) have to find someone to bat at No.4. Who do you expect to take that No.4 spot?” – Ponting asked Gavaskar during the discussion on 7 Cricket.
“It looks to me it could be KL Rahul. Or no, actually I think Rahane will go at No.4 once Virat goes away. Then you might have Rahul bat at No.5 or Shubman Gill,” the former India captain added.
Notably, Both Rahul and Gill are in good form with the willow. KL was included in the Test squad after looking at his spectacular performance in the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL 2020), while last appearance in the whites for India came in August last year. Gill, on the other hand, is yet to make his debut for India in the longest format and looked in good form in the second practice game against Australia A as he slammed 43 and 65 runs, respectively across two innings.