India is all set to play the ODI World Cup this year and they are the host nation as well. Like the 2019 event, this year as well India has the same concern regarding the number four in the playing XI. India is looking to find a settled player at this position. However, after the announcement of the Asia Cup schedule, Shreyas Iyer’s presence will definitely give some chill to the Indian dressing room who used to play at this position before his injury.
The former Indian head coach Ravi Shastri has proposed the idea of Virat Kohli moving down from the No. 3 batting position to address a gap in the team. This suggestion has gained support from individuals such as Sunil Gavaskar and Tom Moody of Australia.
However, the former Indian cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar feels that Virat Kohli is being unfairly singled out as a ‘scapegoat,’ and people think that he must take the responsibility of all the major problems of the team.
Manjrekar Said,”The more and more you talk about other options like Ishan Kishan, Virat Kohli seems to get relegated. He has sort of become the scapegoat in the sense that you bat him at No.4 and all your problems are solved.”
Manjrekar said that the Indian cricket management did a similar experiment with Sachin Tendulkar during the 2007 ODI World Cup and eventually India kicked out from the tournament in the group stage only.
During the 2007 ODI World Cup, the team experimented with Sachin Tendulkar and sent him at number four for two times in which he scored poorly. In one match he got a duck and in another one he got 7 runs in his kitty.
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“There is also a cultural issue in Indian cricket. In the 2007 World Cup when the team management of Rahul Dravid and Greg Chappell sent Tendulkar at No.4 instead of opening because they had people like Virender Sehwag and others at the top of the order. But that became a huge controversy. So it is really up to Kohli, an iconic player, on whether he wants to bat at No.4. It seems like a perfectly simple solution, but it concerns Kohli,” Manjrekar said.