Former Indian batsman VVS Laxman has heavily criticized Indian captain Virat Kohli for changing his batting order. The criticism came after India faced a major upset by the hands of Australia. Australia beat India by 10 wickets in the first ODI of the three-match series at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. Fans and experts have raised questions about Kohli’s decision-making ability.
It was a major upset as India was the favorite to win the tie before the game began. But, there were some shocking decisions taken regarding the selection of the Playing XI. K.L. Rahul, Rohit Sharma, and Shikar Dhawan all played together due to which there was a change in the batting order. Rahul took the number three spot whereas, Captain Kohli had to step up at number four. This led to a series of poor performances by the Indian batting and none of the batsmen could convert big.
VVS Laxman Criticizes Virat Kohli’s Approach
While speaking in a post-match show of the official broadcaster, Laxman said, “I don’t see this working. Sachin Tendulkar was the best player the world had ever seen. But he never relished batting at number four.” Laxman added, “You want your best batsman to play maximum number of deliveries and set the game up and finish the game for the team, especially against quality attack. One cannot afford to experiment against this Australian bowling line-up.”
Laxman was clearly unhappy at the end of the game after watching a string of low scores for Virat at number four. Australian legend, Matthew Hayden, who was alongside Laxman felt the same. Hayden said, “You’ve got someone like Virat Kohli that has played 230-odd one-day matches and 180 of those have been at No.3 and he has scored almost 10,000 runs at that particular position.”
Team India had a poor display on show in the first ODI. Having won the toss, Australia decided to field first. Apart from Shikhar Dhawan, no other Indian batsman looked in good touch and wicket kept falling at regular intervals. K.L. Rahul started strongly but couldn’t convert his innings into a grand one. India were bowled out for 255 runs in 49.1 overs.
The Australian openers had a smooth sail as they cruised past the target in spectacular fashion. Indian bowlers looked helpless and couldn’t clinch even a single wicket. Both Finch and Warner scored splendid centuries. They contributed a record-breaking first wicket partnership for Australia vs India in ODI Cricket.
The second ODI of the series will take place on 17th January in Rajkot. India will have to win that game in order to come back in the series. Captain Virat Kohli will have to reassess the conditions and select a reasonable and balanced squad. If India loses the second game, they will eventually lose this series.