There is a debate going on about the opening batting slot. It was assertively indicated by India Test captain Virat Kohli that Shikhar Dhawan could be picked ahead of in-form KL Rahul for the opening match against the West Indies in Antigua starting on Thursday.
a�?If you speak about KL Rahul and someone like Shikhar, it’s very difficult to take a call up front, in the first match of a series, because someone like Shikhar is a very dominant player, he can dominate sessions and bring you into the Test match, especially in conditions like West Indies,a�? Kohli told reporters on the eve of the first match at the Vivian Richards Cricket Ground.
a�?You saw how he played in Sri Lanka, he scored a very quick hundred, but got injured unfortunately, but that’s what I mean. You can’t count out a guy like Shikhar because of a couple of innings here and there. So we need to give guys a decent run, and know that if something goes wrong, we have a quality player like Rahul waiting in the wings and he’s as solid as anyone in world cricket right now, and he’ll do a good job whenever he gets a chance,a�? the skipper added.
Two half-centuries in warm-up games have been scored by the 24-year-old Rahul, who made a strong case for himself before the first Test. He continued his sparkling form which was displayed by him during the preceding limited-overs series in Zimbabwe last month.
Describing the dilemma as a a�?very strange situationa��, it was however, guaranteed by Kohli that openers will get equal opportunity in the four-match series.
a�?It is a very strange situation because in international cricket, you need to understand one thing that you cannot count players out because of one series,a�? he said. a�?If you’re talking about KL Rahul, obviously he’s improved leaps and bounds as a cricketer in the last 3-4 months. He’s established himself as the third opener for India; he’s a regular in the Test side. He played in Sri Lanka as well, scored runs there.
a�?But that’s one call you need to take as a captain, and that’s why they say the job is never easy. It’s just that, whoever starts a Test series, he has an edge over [the player] who has to wait for his chance, but at the same time, we have four Test matches and you will get a chance at some stage,a�? Kohli added.