KL Rahul should open the innings for India in ODIs too, suggests Gautam Gambhir
Despite KL Rahul's fine show as an opener in T20Is, the team management surprisingly dropped him at number five for the ongoing ODI series against New Zealand.
Updated - Feb 5, 2020 12:10 pm
In the last couple of months or so, KL Rahul has showed that he can be quite versatile in the batting order. In the three-match ODI series against Australia, the right-handed batsman at different positions in all the three games. In the first game, he batted at number three before slamming 80 off just 52 balls in the second game. In the series-decider, he had opened the batting after Shikhar Dhawan injured his shoulder while fielding.
The team-management then promoted him as an opener in the five-match T20I series against New Zealand as regular opener Dhawan could not make it to the tour due to injury. Rahul went on to make the most of the opportunity as he finished the series as top run-scorer and bagged the Man of the Series award, helping India clean sweep the five-match series.
Gautam Gambhir unimpressed with team management’s decision
Despite KL Rahul’s fine show as an opener in T20Is, the team management surprisingly dropped him at number five for the ongoing ODI series against New Zealand. With both Dhawan and Rohit Sharma out due to injury, there were speculations that Rahul would continue to open. However, the team-management surprisingly decided to go in with new opening combination of Prithvi Shaw and Mayank Agarwal.
And the decision has not only left the fans surprised but also former India opener Gautam Gambhir. The ex-cricketer-turned-commentator made it clear that he is unimpressed with the decision. Gambhir suggested that India should have opened with Rahul and Agarwal while out-of-favour Rishabh Pant should have kept the wickets.
“I am not sure if it is a great idea to remove KL Rahul from the top of the order. If anything India could have gone with a Rahul-Agarwal combination and have Rishabh Pant keep wickets,” Gambhir wrote in his column for The Times of India.
“Rahul is a valuable asset and should be well looked after. Yes, he has done some good work behind the stumps in the games that he has kept. But I am not sure he should be expected to keep in the 50-over format,” he added.