Former flamboyant Indian opener Virender Sehwag has indirectly taken a dig at India captain Virat Kohli and head coach Ravi Shastri as he thinks the current Indian team management may not go with KL Rahul despite his match-winning knocks against Australia in Rajkot.
In the second ODI against mighty Australia, Rahul smashed 80 off just 52 balls including six boundaries and three huge sixes to lift India to a huge total of 340/6. However, Sehwag said despite his wonderful performance KL Rahul might not save his position in the middle order if he fails in the upcoming series.
“If KL Rahul fails four times batting at No 5, the current Indian team management will look to change his slot. However, the same wasn’t the case with Dhoni, who knew how important it is to back players at such positions, having himself gone through the hard grind,” Sehwag told Cricbuzz.
Known for his ability knocks and fearless approach – Virender Sehwag said that there was more clarity about team selection when MS Dhoni was the captain of the India team.
“With MS Dhoni as captain, there was greater clarity with regards to each player’s position in the batting unit. He had an eye for talent and had identified individuals who would take Indian cricket forward,” Sehwag added.
On the other hand, Sehwag thinks that the top-order batsmen in 50 overs game have more chances of being successful and it’s the middle-order that needs support from the team management.
“With the top-order finding it easier for a while in limited-overs cricket, it is those in the middle-order who need backing from a captain. If you don’t give players time, how else will they learn and become big players. I myself batted in the middle-order before opening and made a lot of mistakes, which even resulted in the team’s losses. But you don’t become a big player sitting outside on the bench. Players need time,” Sehwag further added.
He had also praised the opener Rohit Sharma who had played a match-winning knock of 119 in the third and decider ODI against Australia in Bengaluru. The former player compared Rohit’s mindset to his own.
“Whenever a player of the caliber of Rohit has 3-4 poor innings with the bat, he himself thinks that ‘I need to make my next inning count’ and that is exactly what Rohit did. Even I used to think in the same way whenever I had a poor run of 4-5 innings,” Virender Sehwag concluded.