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Sunday, October 2, 2022

Sharma considering Kohli as third opener

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India captain Rohit Sharma, ahead of the T20I series against Australia, has made it clear that Virat Kohli will be India’s third opener in the upcoming T20 World Cup.

“It is always nice to have options available for you, especially if you are going into a tournament such as T20 World Cup, you want that flexibility. It’s an option for us, and since we have not taken the third opener, he can obviously open,” Rohit told reporters in Mohali ahead of their first T20I against visiting Australia.

“He opens for his franchise, and he has done really well. It’s a definite option for us.”

Virat Kohli, while opening for India, has recorded his first international hundred in nearly three years against Afghanistan in the Asia Cup. He was also the highest run-getter for India.

“I had a word with Rahul Dravid and we have decided that we might have to open with Virat in few matches. We have seen that in the last match and we are happy,” he added.

Although Rohit maintained that Virat is a definite option, but KL Rahul is going to open for India.

“I don’t think we are going to experiment. KL Rahul is going to be our opener for sure. His performance for India has always gone unnoticed. One or two bad game doesn’t overshadow his past records. We know what KL brings to the table, his presence at the top is very crucial for us,” said Sharma.

That leaves India with the same top three as the one in the last World Cup in the UAE in 2021. In that World Cup, India failed to make it out of the group stages, and again failed to make the final of the Asia Cup at the same venue. Rohit, though, said this time was different because India batted with their new approach and came close even in defeats.

“We will continue to play like that,” Rohit said of their new, aggressive batting style. “That is something we spoke quite clearly right at the beginning. Everyone is quite comfortable with that. At the same time we know what our second line of defence is. We spend a lot of time talking about these kinds of things. Guys are very clear how to bat at 10 for 3, and how to bat at 50 for no loss. All those things have been discussed a lot at length. Now it is all about going and executing it.

The Indian team will be playing its first T20 against Australia on Tuesday in Mohali, followed by second and third T20 in Nagpur and Hyderabad on September 23 and September 25.

The Indian team will be playing its first T20 against Australia on Tuesday in Mohali, followed by second and third T20 in Nagpur and Hyderabad on September 23 and September 25.

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