Yuvraj Singh picks India’s probable openers for the WTC final against New Zealand
Yuvraj said that negotiating the brand new Dukes' ball could be a challenge for both the opening batters.
Updated - Jun 10, 2021 8:35 am
Former Indian cricketer Yuvraj Singh has backed Shubman Gill and Rohit Sharma to open the batting for the national team in the World Test Championship final against New Zealand, starting June 18 at the Rose Bowl in Southampton. For the opening slot, India have tried Mayank Agarwal and Prithvi Shaw as well in the last couple of years, but both have somehow lost their place.
Yuvraj reckons that Rohit needs to bring forth his experience into play while playing in English conditions. Sharma has played a solitary Test in England back in 2014 even as Gill is yet to play on English soil.
As per the 39-year-old Yuvraj, the challenge for Rohit and Gill lies in negotiating the Dukes’ ball when it’s hard and new. “Rohit Sharma is very experienced now in Test matches. He has almost 7 hundreds as an opener. But both Rohit and Shubman Gill have not opened in England ever,” Yuvraj told Sports Tak.
In England, it’s important to take it one session at a time: Yuvraj Singh
“They know the challenge, the Dukes’ Ball swings early. They have to get used to the conditions quickly,” he stated. After 20 Tests overseas, Rohit averages a mere 27. Gill, on the other hand, has looked short of confidence, irrespective of the format he’s playing in.
“In England, it’s important to take it one session at a time. In the morning, the ball swings and seams, in the afternoon you can score runs, after Tea, it swings again. As a batsman, if you can adapt to these things, you can be successful,” Yuvraj quipped.
Earlier Ravi Shastri, the head coach of Team India, and many other pundits reckoned that a best of three matches should have been there to decide the winner of the WTC. Yuvraj also echoed their words and said that the Black Caps have the edge in the final since they are currently taking part in a two-match Test series against Joe Root and Co.
“I feel in a situation like this, there should be a best of 3 Tests, because if you lose the first one then you can come back in the next two. India will have a slight disadvantage because New Zealand are already playing Test cricket in England,” he added.