Gautam Gambhir on Ishan Kishan, Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul’s batting positions


Gautam Gambhir feels Team India should consider opening with Ishan Kishan and Rohit Sharma at the T20 World Cup 2022, with KL Rahul playing in the middle order.

Kishan smoked 34 runs off just 21 balls in the second T20I against South Africa on Sunday, June 12. The diminutive southpaw has given the Men In Blue explosive starts in both matches against the Proteas thus far.

During a discussion on Star Sports, Gautam Gambhir was asked about Ishan Kishan batting well before falling prey to a bouncer. He responded:

“Absolutely. We will have to see if Team India persists with him when KL Rahul, Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli come. Will you be tempted to start with him along with Rohit Sharma and play KL Rahul in the middle order? That is a temptation.”

The former Indian opener cast his vote for Kishan to be given an extended run at the top of the order. Gambhir reasoned:

“You always talk about an X-factor, a fearless approach, whether he scores runs or not, he (Kishan) brings a fearless approach. I will definitely want to persist with him. Australian conditions – bouncy wickets, he likes to play the pull shots, hits the length ball well. So you should probably persist with him till the World Cup.”

Apart from providing blazing starts, Kishan also gave Team India the option to field a left-right opening combination. It will be interesting to see if the Indian think-tank opts to go that route or sticks with Rohit and Rahul at the top of the order.

“If someone plays a destructive hook or pull shot in the Indian circuit after Rohit Sharma, it is Ishan Kishan” – Sanjay Bangar

Sanjay Bangar was asked about Ishan Kishan’s dismissal against a short delivery. He replied:

“I don’t think there is a problem in the way he plays the short ball. I feel he should pay more attention to the front foot shots, his back foot game is already settled. I believe if someone plays a destructive hook or pull shot in the Indian circuit after Rohit Sharma, it is Ishan Kishan.”

Short Ball does the trick for Anrich Nortje. Ishan Kishan Departs after a well made 34 runs from 21 balls. #INDvsSA

The former Indian batting coach reckons Kishan could be prolific in Australian conditions if he improves his front foot game. Bangar observed:

“The more the bowlers feed him in that area, his confidence will keep on growing. He has to sort out his front foot game slightly. If he focuses more on the front foot game, I feel he can bat exceedingly well in Australian conditions.”

Kishan was found slightly wanting against swinging deliveries in the T20I series against the West Indies and IPL 2022. The Mumbai Indians (MI) opener was even left on all fours while being castled by Mukesh Choudhary in the recently concluded edition of the Indian Premier League.

Q. Should Ishan Kishan open the batting for Team India instead of KL Rahul at the T20 World Cup?

Edited by Sankalp Srivastava

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