IND vs ZIM: With KL Rahul back as opener, Shubman Gill might have to come in at No. 3

148
IND vs ZIM: With KL Rahul back as opener, Shubman Gill might have to come in at No. 3
IND vs ZIM: With KL Rahul back as opener, Shubman Gill might have to come in at No. 3

IND vs ZIM: With KL Rahul back as opener, Shubman Gill might have to come in at No. 3

IND vs ZIM: KL Rahul will utilize the ODI series against Zimbabwe as a “dress rehearsal” for the Asia Cup, so he is prepared to take Shubman Gill’s place at the top of the order alongside Shikhar Dhawan in the forthcoming matches.

Since the T20 World Cup is of utmost importance and Gill isn’t really in the picture when it comes to the shortest format, he might be given the number 3 spot to make sure his captain gets enough playing time before the August 27-starting regional championship in the UAE.

This is assuming that all three of them are healthy and available for every game in the series.

While Rahul Dravid won’t be leading the support staff for the brief three-match series, which begins August 18 in Harare, NCA head VVS Laxman is almost certain to stick to the head coach’s game plan.

Young Gill, who had a fantastic 50-over series in the West Indies, where he hit 64, 43, and 98 not out in three games to win the “Player of the Series” award, has difficulties as a result of Rahul’s recovery.

IND vs ZIM: With KL Rahul back as opener, Shubman Gill might have to come in at No. 3
IND vs ZIM: With KL Rahul back as opener, Shubman Gill might have to come in at No. 3

Will Rahul allow Gill to maintain his strong performance at the top of the order or will he occupy that spot from the start while keeping an eye on the Asia Cup?

“I think Shubman groomed in the right way by the Indian team management. While he has done exceedingly well in the Caribbean ODIs, what I can gauge from this team’s philosophy is to prepare players for multiple slots. Hence I feel for this particular series, Shubman might have to come in at No. 3,” former national selector and Test opener Devang Gandhi gave his viewpoint on the issue.

Agreed Deep Dasgupta, a current commentator and another former India player.

“I agree it is difficult after you have had such a good series. But currently, the aim would be to prepare Rahul for the Asia Cup T20’s opening slot. He needs to get a lot of batting time and that’s a priority. I think it will be a short-term arrangement as Shubman I feel is being groomed as an opener for the ODI World Cup,” Dasgupta, currently commentating in ‘The Hundred’, said.

Rahul perceived as a middle-order anchor rather than an opener in the 50-over format. Since the home series against England in 2021. But as he assumed the captaincy for the ODI series in South Africa, he had positioned himself as an opener.

However, Rahul returned to the middle of the order in the previous ODI he played. That was in Ahmedabad against the West Indies and featured both Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan.

Therefore, it won’t be fair to Gill if he doesn’t start the innings. Gandhi believes differently.

“Look, No.3 is a proper top-order slot. He might have to come in as early as the second ball of the innings. And that is as good as opening the batting. Also my hunch is that once Rahul has enough game time under his belt. He will again bat middle-order with Gill prepared for the 2023 event,” Gandhi said.