Australia vs India: Sanjay Manjrekar picks his opening pair for the Melbourne Test

He is in the favour of dropping of KL Rahul from the team.

Sanjay Manjrekar
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Sanjay Manjrekar. (Photo Source: Twitter)

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Amidst all the injury issues in the ongoing Test series against Australia, Team India is being troubled with the opening combination. KL Rahul and Murali Vijay haven’t infused any confidence to be retained for the rest of the series and there is a lot of deliberation going on if the visitors should dish out an entirely new opening pair for the Boxing Day Test. However, Sanjay Manjrekar has also jumped into the discussion and has suggested a unique combination at the top of the order for India.

Rahul and Vijay together have stitched only a solitary fifty-plus stand so far in the four innings and more than anything, the pattern of dismissals is worrisome for the team management. With Prithvi Shaw being ruled out of the series, India are bereft of options and are left only with Mayank Agarwal as the specialist opener who is yet to make his international debut.

Manjrekar bats for Vihari to open

While speaking to ESPNCricinfo, Sanjay Manjrekar weighed in on the options India could look into as far as the openers are concerned. He felt that KL Rahul should be dropped from the team only because of the way he is getting out over the last few matches. The former Indian cricketer also pointed out how Murali Vijay has looked comfortable after spending time in the middle and believed that he should be part of the team for the next Test.

Interestingly, Manjrekar backed Hanuma Vihari to open the innings having shown nerves of steel in the two Test matches he has played so far in his short career so far. He added that Agarwal shouldn’t be rushed into the Test arena in Australia without any practice.

“That is my issue with Mayank Agarwal. He’s got all the talent but is it fair to send the youngster into a Test match in Australia without any warm-up games? So I’d rather have Hanuma Vihari up the order. Every time I have seen him bat, I see more than a number six batsmen. I can see number 1,2 or 3 batsman play in him,” Manjrekar said.

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