Vikram Rathour, India‘s batting coach, has opened up about the surprising decision of pushing Rohit Sharma down to number 3 – and consequently Virat Kohli to number 4 – while sending Ishan Kishan to open alongside KL Rahul against New Zealand on Sunday in Dubai.
Ishan Kishan came in place of the injured Suryakumar Yadav, but wasn’t slotted in at number 4, and instead was asked to open.
India suffered a thumping loss as the batters could manage only 110 in 20 overs, which the Kiwis overhauled inside 15 overs, as neither of the top four went past 20.
Vikram Rathour was quizzed about this decision in the press conference.
Q – “Rohit Sharma has played over a 100 games as opener in T20Is, Was his consent taken before Ishan Kishan was promoted as an opener ? Whose decision was it to send Ishan Kishan to open in the last match against New Zealand?” a journalist asked India’s batting coach.
Vikram Rathour revealed that it was the decision from the entire team management, which also includes vice-captain Rohit Sharma.
“Suryakumar had a back spasm the night earlier, so Ishan came in as his replacement, and he has done really well as an opener for India in the past. The decision was from the whole team management, and of course Rohit is part of that team management and that discussion,” Vikram Rathour said in the presser.
It technically made sense having an left-hander up front: Vikram Rathour
He further explained that adding Kishan as an opener not only provided them a left-hander in the top-order, which consists of right-handers in Sharma, Rahul and Kohli, but this move also prevented India from having three left-handers in the middle-order, the other two being Rishabh Pant and Ravindra Jadeja.
“It technically made sense having an left-hander up front, and we didn’t want to have too many left handers in the late middle order with Ishan, Pant and Jadeja and technically it made sense, that guy had batted at top of the order, so yeah, that is why the decision was taken,” Vikram Rathour concluded on this topic.
With two losses in two games, India now are wishing for other results to go their way while also need to win their own remaining three games by big margins. They will next meet Afghanistan on Wednesday in Abu Dhabi.