India vs Windies: Virat Kohli is certain they’ve found the player to solve the No.4 conundrum
Kohli feels that he has got the answer for the long-standing problem.
Published - Oct 20, 2018 7:52 pm | Updated - Oct 20, 2018 7:52 pm
The number four slot in the Indian ODI set-up has been a matter of concern for the Indian skipper Virat Kohli and the management for a while now. Eight players have been tried out at that position thus far since the start of 2017. Among them, veteran Yuvraj Singh and Dinesh Karthik were given the longest run to cement their spot in the team. Although both these batsmen did fairly well, they failed to maintain the required consistency.
Yuvraj played 9 innings at that position, scored 358 runs at an average of 45. His counterpart Karthik did equally well with 264 runs in 9 innings at an average of 53. But these two men have got a majority of these runs in just two or three innings. Hence, the management was forced to look beyond them. However, according to Kohli, they seem to have found a possible solution for the slot.
Kohli banks on Ambati Rayudu to come good
As it is quite evident, Rayudu will be batting at number four in the Windies ODI series. He will be the ninth batsman to play at that particular position. In the pre-match press conference, the Indian skipper expressed confidence in him to come good. He wants to give the Hyderabadi batsman enough time so that he can seal the place. His performance in the recent Asia Cup was impressive. The 33-year-old scored 175 runs from six innings at an average of 43.75 in the tournament.
“The only position we were trying to figure out was number four for a long time. We tried many players who unfortunately could not capitalise or cement their places in a way we wanted. With Rayudu coming in and playing well in the Asia Cup, it’s about giving him enough game time till the World Cup so that the particular slot will be sorted for us,” said Virat Kohli.
Although Rayudu could have made his mark in the Indian team and sealed a spot for the World Cup 2019 by now, his career has often been halted by various injuries. Kohli felt that Rayudu adds the required balance to the middle order.
“The team felt it there, and I also watched him. He (Rayudu) is designed to play that middle order batsman’s role. We feel that our middle-order is more or less balanced now,” Kohli said. “We believe he is the right person to capitalise on that spot. He is experienced and has won many games for his state and also in the IPL. He has a great ODI record already for India. I think the batting order is sorted.”