The former batting coach of India Sanjay Bangar is happy with the move of Rohit Sharma opening the innings. He believes that the right-handed batsman can do wonders for the team if he opens the innings and rectifies his mistakes as quickly as possible. Further, Bangar hopes Rohit Sharma gets a decent time in the middle.
India in all likelihood will open with Rohit Sharma and Mayank Agarwal in the upcoming Test series against South Africa on home soil after chief selector MSK Prasad hinted at the change last week. Rohit was picked ahead of regular opener KL Rahul, who was dropped from the side after a string of poor scores in the West Indies.
Considered as one of the modern-day greats, Rohit has not been able to cement his place in the Test side. The 32-year-old has played 27 Tests so far, in which he has scored 1585 runs at an average of 39.6. The swashbuckling opener, who has three double-hundreds to his name in ODIs, has been able to hit just three centuries in red-ball cricket.
Rohit Sharma can find gaps with ease – Sanjay Bangar
Alongside Sanjay Bangar, former captain Sourav Ganguly has also backed Rohit for the Test opener’s role and said that the star batsman deserved an opportunity in the longest format of the game. And also, the likes of Gautam Gambhir and Harbhajan Singh wanted Rohit Sharma to open the innings.
“At the moment, there is no place in the settled middle order in the Test team. Opening will be a new challenge for him, since he has rarely done it in the longer formats. But the advantage is that he will get to bat against a hard ball with plenty of gaps in the field. He will also not have to wait for his turn to bat, which will save his mental energy,” Bangar told ESPNcricinfo in an interview.
“If he succeeds, his style of play will be extremely helpful to the team. It might result in being able to successfully chase down targets that we haven’t achieved in the past, like in Cape Town and Edgbaston,” he added.
Rohit, who had a great run in the World Cup 2019 as he slammed five centuries, was in the squad for the West Indies Tests but was not included in the playing XI. Rohit Sharma has played 27 Tests so far and scored 1585 runs at an average of 39.62 with three centuries and 10 half-centuries. It will be interesting to see how he comes up with his new role in Test format.