Former Indian player Aakash Chopra thinks India might swap the batting order, interchanging the positions of wicket-keeper Rishabh Pant and all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja’s.
India lost to England in the third Test by an innings and 76 runs in Leeds after they were bowled out for 278 in the second innings. Once Cheteshwar Pujara and skipper Virat Kohli departed in the early part of the day, India faltered against the England bowlers as their innings was folded inside the first session.
Pant scored only one run in the second innings as Ollie Robinson angled the ball across to force the batsman to push the ball, which he eventually nicked to Craig Overton at third slip.
If Rishabh Pant doesn’t score runs, it will be a problem: Aakash Chopra
Pant, who was the architect of India in their historic Test series win in Australia this year, has scored only 87 runs from five innings at an average of 17.4 in the current series so far.
Chopra thinks India could promote Jadeja ahead of Pant so there can be balance in the batting order and the commentator also expressed concern over Pant’s lack of runs in this series.
“In the next match, India might start thinking to promote Jadeja and demote Rishabh because the five-bowler theory looks good to hear, but it means Pant after Ajinkya, then Jadeja and four proper bowlers. It’s not a great thing,” Chopra said on his Youtube channel.
“Rishabh Pant is looking the big concern to me. The way he is batting, you are playing five bowlers because you know you have Rishabh Pant, who is a fabulous batsman, and that is why you are not playing Wriddhiman Saha.”
“But if he doesn’t score runs, it will be a problem. There will be a problem with his way of playing. Your team is stuck, and you are stepping out and playing. My way or the highway works, but I think that is an area of concern,” he added.
Rishabh Pant will have to really change his tack very quickly: Aakash Chopra
Pant is under a dilemma whether he should play his attacking game to boost India’s score or move back to his defensive mode in order to save his wicket. Interestingly, Robinson has got the wicket of the Indian wicket-keeper four times in this series and Chopra feels Pant needs to work on his tactics quickly.
“You expect from him, and you only throw stones at a tree that bears fruit. You look towards an X-factor and ask him to score runs. Rishabh Pant will have to really change his tack very quickly. He is a class player, but till now, his number is in Ollie Robinson’s pocket,” Chopra said.
The fourth Test between India and England will be played at Kennington Oval in London on September 2.