World Cup 2019: Sanjay Manjrekar picks Playing XI, ousts Rahul and Jadeja

World Cup 2019: Sanjay Manjrekar picks Playing XI, ousts Rahul and Jadeja

Majrekar reckons Vijay Shankar should be given the opportunity to play at No.4 after that it can be decided if the all-rounder holds the spot.

KL Rahul
KL Rahul. (Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP/Getty Images)

KL Rahul came back strongly in the warm-up game against Bangladesh in Cardiff on Wednesday, scoring a magnificent 108 in just 99 deliveries. After a disappointing six off 10 balls in the first match against New Zealand, Rahul’s form, as well as the glitch with the No.4 batting slot, remained a headache for Virat Kohli’s side. The Karnataka batsman settled both the issues with his timely knock. MS Dhoni also slammed a century (113 off 78 balls) and the duo helped the Men in Blue to pick up a 95-run win.

However, even after hitting a scintillating ton which propelled the team to an unassailable victory against Bangladesh, it seems Rahul couldn’t impress former India cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar. The 53-year-old TV presenter, who had said recently that Rahul undergoes lean patches of form for far too long and that he has a problem with temperament. According to the 53-year-old, Rahul should not feature in India’s playing XI that will take on South Africa in Southampton on June 5, which is the Men in Blue’s tournament opener.

Manjrekar feels that if Vijay Shankar has been picked in the squad for the No.4 position specifically, he should be allowed to play in that position to show his worth in the early part of the tournament. In case he fails to make use of it, then Rahul can take over. While Vijay didn’t play the game against New Zealand, he batted at No.5 against Bangladesh but could manage only two in seven balls. He failed to pick any wicket during bowling as well, conceding 46 runs in six overs.

Manjrekar expressed his opinion in a video recorded for ESPNcricinfo.

Manjrekar wants Kedar Jadhav to fill 5th bowler’s quota

Manjrekar also went ahead to pick Kedar Jadhav, who is still recovering from a shoulder injury that he sustained during the Indian Premier League, for the No.5 slot and not Dinesh Karthik. He said that since Hardik Pandya will be playing as an all-rounder at No.7, he is not certain to bowl his full quota of 10 overs every game and in that case, Jadhav could be required to complete the fifth bowler’s quota.

Manjrekar’s XI: Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli (c), Vijay Shankar, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni (wk), Hardik Pandya, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal.