Former Indian batsman Aakash Chopra feels that the all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja might hold on to his place in the playing XI ahead of someone like Mohammad Siraj or Hanuma Vihari. The dilemma has taken place after the first day in the World Test Championship final was washed out with a lot of rain at Southampton and the reserve day might just come into place.
India has already named their playing XI for the final with Ravindra Jadeja being the all-rounder in the side. With the overcast conditions favouring the swing bowlers for the rest of the tests, India has the option to bring in another seamer in the place of Jadeja who could become relatively ineffective in these conditions.
“Jaddu Might Score The Same Runs As Vihari At That Number” – Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra mentioned that the possibility of replacing Jadeja is very unlikely as there is no Shardul Thakur in the 15 member squad. He added that Ravindra Jadeja might have the same impact as Vihari as a batsman down the order and there will be no need to replace him. Also, he concluded that having Vihari at six and Pant at seven will not be the ideal option for playing XI.
“The change will not happen because in place of Jaddu, Shardul is not there, you will have to play Hanuma Vihari. Jaddu might score the same runs as Vihari at that number. He will also give you the bowling and fielding with that.”
“If you include Hanuma, you will either play him at No.7, a pure batsman batting at No.7 does not make sense. If you play him at No.6, then Rishabh Pant plays at No.7, that doesn’t make sense at all,” Aakash Chopra opined on his Youtube channel.
“You Need Some Batting Depth” – Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra opined that the conditions might make it tough for batsmen and the lower order should be in a place to contribute. He added that the fourth fast bowler might just make the batting look weak and the tail will look long.
“I will not play a fourth fast bowler, four fast bowlers, and Ravichandran Ashwin. That’s not going to happen, the tail will become too long. It is already looking like a game where No. 5 to 8 might score more runs than the top four batsmen. That’s a possibility, so you need some batting depth.”
Meanwhile, the overcast conditions will be favouring the New Zealand seamers a lot more and the Indian batsmen need to be more precise with their shot-making.