India took a 2-0 lead in the five match series against Australia but lost three matches in a trot, thanks to the inexperienced middle order which became the prominent reason of the downfall. Ambati Rayudu was trusted at number four slot after his heroics in Asia cup 2018 last year but the Hyderabadi batsman has failed to deliver on a consistent basis.
Rayudu could just score 33 runs in three matches of the series and his failure has given a new headache to the team management before the start of world cup in England. KL Rahul and Rishabh Pant were the other two batsmen trusted in the middle order but the two failed to deliver which has raised questions on team selection.
Virat Kohli mentioned in the post match presentation of the final ODI that the team needs to think about one batting slot and that is probably number four. Some impressive performances in IPL may open doors for other batsman, meanwhile former India batsman Sanjay Manjrekar has suggested the ideal batsman for India at number four and five in the upcoming world cup.
Manjrekar bats for Shankar at number four for India
The former Mumbai batsman mentioned that India has been unable to find an exciting prospect like Yuvraj Singh and Suresh Raina at number four and five respectively. He mentioned that the players who were given the opportunity to seal the place, failed to deliver on the consistent basis.
“That India still don’t have obvious and exciting Nos. 4 and 5, like Yuvraj Singh and Suresh Raina when they were around, is more the fault of players who have been given these chances than those who gave it to them,” Manjrekar was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo.
“Not one of the seven to eight players tried in those positions has shown exceptional ability and, importantly, consistency in their performances in the most batting-friendly format. For a batting country like India, this is as surprising as it’s disappointing,” he added.
Manjrekar, 53, opined that Vijay Shankar should bat at number four for India after some impressive performance with the willow in the ODI series against Australia. He further said that Maharashtra all-rounder Kedar Jadhav should take the number five slot.