India Number 4 batsman: The Indian selection committee has announced who will bat at No. 4 for India during the World Cup.
There is no going into a safe house about the certitude that the No. 4 batting position was arguably the most-discussed topic ahead of India’s 2019 Cricket World Cup squad announced.
In a bid to zero in on one candidate, India played as many as 12 batsmen at No. 4 post the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019. After being included into the Asia Cup squad last year, Ambati Rayudu looked certain to make the position of his own after scoring 639 runs in 21 matches at an average of 42.60 and a strike rate of 84.07 including a century and four half-centuries.
From saying that he is the right person to capitalize on that spot to mentioning that the team management will have to back him till the World Cup, India captain Virat Kohli had also spoken highly about the 33-year old cricketer.
While Rayudu might be ruing his fortune post not getting named in the squad, his potential replacement in Vijay Shankar being a three-dimensional player has worked in his favour.
“The No. 4 [Vijay Shankar] chosen ahead of Ambati Rayudu because he can also bowl and fields better. Will be particularly handy on an overcast day, both with his tighter batting technique and seam bowling,” chief selector MSK Prasad was quoted as saying during the press conference.
What are the other options?
If the need arises, India also have the option of playing wicket-keeper batsman Mahendra Singh Dhoni or reserve opener Lokesh Rahul at the same spot.
From Head Coach Ravi Shastri to Prasad to Kohli, all three of them have advocated for the skipper to bat at No. 4 depending on the situation. With Kohli second to none at No. 3 in ODIs, his batting position shouldn’t really be changed for a tournament as big as the World Cup.
How Twitter reacted:
“After the Champions Trophy, we tried quite a few people [at No.4]. We gave a few more chances to Rayudu. What Vijay Shankar brings is three dimensional. We are looking at him at no. 4 to begin with.” – chief selector MSK Prasad #WorldCup2019 #indiasquad
— The Field (@thefield_in) April 15, 2019
Highest batting averages for India in ODI cricket (min. 20 innings):
— ICC (@ICC) April 15, 2019
not so long back Rayudu virtually had the endorsement of virat kohli, no less, to be India’s number 4 at the world cup..in sport, there can be no guarantees..
— Gaurav Kalra (@gauravkalra75) April 15, 2019
Ambati Rayudu must be shattered though. His place was deemed certain and he had even quit 4 day cricket to focus on this. But form is such a cruel mistress. The harder he tried the more he seemed to struggle. My heart goes out to him.
— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) April 15, 2019
So, India has picked Shankar as #4 option. Without really knowing if it’ll work. DK will play only when Dhoni isn’t available. And no fourth seamer. Interesting choices. Hope it works. ☺️🤗Good luck 👍🙌 #CWC
— Aakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) April 15, 2019
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