New Delhi: As the World Cup is approaching, India still has to answer to the same old debate. Who will bat at No.4 in the middle order? On Monday, India announced the squad for Asia Cup 2023 and Shreyas Iyer and KL Rahul made it to the 17-member squad. Iyer and Rahul seem to be the best options for the gap that is haunting India for the last 2 World Cups. Indian skipper Rohit Sharma himself accepted that after all-rounder Yuvraj Singh, India is struggling to fill the void at the No.4 position.
Ravi Shastri suggests Virat Kohli to bat at No.4
In such a situation, considering the weak middle order, India’s former head coach Ravi Shastri has said that Virat Kohli should be dropped at number-4 instead of number-3, but former Indian cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar was not happy with the idea and compared it to Sachin Tendulkar’s poor performance in the 2007 ODI World Cup.
Sanjay Manjrekar hits back
In an interview with Star Sport, Sanjay Manjrekar said that Virat Kohli has become a scapegoat. Remember what happened to Sachin Tendulkar in the 2007 World Cup? He said that the more you talk about other options like Ishan Kishan, the more Virat Kohli is pushed back in the batting order. He has become a scapegoat in a way because you want him to bat at number-4, it can solve all your problems. It is known that apart from Ravi Shastri, former Australian veteran Tom Moody also appeared in favor of sending Kohli to number-4.
Sanjay Manjrekar said that this has been an issue in Indian cricket earlier as well. In the 2007 World Cup, when the team management of captain Rahul Dravid and coach Greg Chappell sent Tendulkar at No.4 instead of opening, as they had Virender Sehwag and other players in the top order. But it became a big controversy.
It up to Virat Kohli
So it is up to Virat Kohli whether he wants to bat at number-4 or not. This seems like a really simple solution. Shastri had said in the past that Kohli has a good record even at No.4. Former cricketer Doda Ganesh also advocated feeding Kohli at number-3.