Former India National Cricket Team all-rounder Irfan Pathan has named Rohit Sharma and Ishan Kishan as his openers for the upcoming three-match ODI series against Sri Lanka National Cricket Team.
India recently defeated Sri Lanka by 2-1 in the three-match T20I series and now the teams are set to lock horns in a three-match ODI series. The 50-over assignments will be played on January 10, 12, and 15 in Guwahati, Kolkata and Trivandrum respectively.
IPL 2023 | Sri Lanka Tour Of India 2023 | Dream11 Prediction | Fantasy Cricket Tips | Cricket Match Prediction Today | Cricket News | Cricket Live Score | New Zealand tour of India 2023 | Australia Tour Of India 2023
Speaking on Star Sports show ‘Follow the Blues’, Pathan said that India should have at least three openers in the squad, with Rohit and Kishan being the first-choice pair while Shubman Gill serving as a back-up.
“I really think right now you should keep at least three openers in place, and for me, Rohit and Ishan comes first and then obviously Shubman Gill,” said Pathan while speaking on Star Sports show ‘Follow the Blues’.
“Shubman Gill is definitely a class act, the two T20 matches did not go well but he has the ability in him and he has performed well at one day cricket. So, it is important to have him at number three, but I will start with Rohit and Ishan Kishan because Ishan Kishan has played some good cricket recently scoring a lot of runs,” Pathan said.
The 37-year-old left-handed opening batsman Shikhar Dhawan was dropped from the ODI squad for the series against Sri Lanka after his string of poor performances, which opened the door for Kishan and Gill.
Coming back from injury is never easy – Irfan Pathan
Rohit Sharma will return to competitive cricket in Sri Lanka ODIs after missing out on action due to a finger injury he sustained during the three-match ODI series against Bangladesh.
Pathan, meanwhile, feels that coming back from injury is never an easy job for the players, but he was confident that Rohit will overcome every challenge on his way.
“Coming back from injury is never easy, and the biggest challenge would be for Rohit Sharma to come back into form. Which is important for a leader. Look, Rohit Sharma as a white ball cricketer for India has played tremendously well over the years and he has to continue this form and make his legacy even better. Fitness will be a challenge along with his return to form, but I have full confidence that he will be able to overcome these challenges fully,” Pathan said.