ENG vs IND: “Why do you suddenly want KL Rahul to bat in the middle order?” – Aakash Chopra

Aakash Chopra supported selectors' decision of not sending Prithvi Shaw or Devdutt Padikkal to England as a replacement for Shubman Gill.

Aakash Chopra and KL Rahul
Aakash Chopra and KL Rahul

Former India cricketer Aakash Chopra has raised questions over the team management’s choice of considering KL Rahul only as a middle-order batsman in Test cricket.

India’s regular Test opener Shubman Gill has been ruled out from the all-important five-match Test series against England, owing to a shin injury. Consequently, several reports surfaced in the media claiming that the management has asked for Prithvi Shaw and Devdutt Padikkal to be flown to the UK post their Sri Lanka tour. The reports further claimed that team India is considering KL Rahul primarily as a middle-order batsman only.

In a recent video uploaded on his Youtube channel, Chopra expressed his astonishment at this while highlighting that Rahul’s all five Test centuries have come while opening the innings. 

“KL Rahul is also present there but it has been said that he will not open. Team management has already declared that KL Rahul is only a middle-order choice. Why do you suddenly want him to bat in the middle order?”

“I mean this is surprising because he has scored five Test centuries, all came there (at the top of the order) only. I don’t know, I thought he was always a backup opener but apparently, he is not, even in extraordinary circumstances. It’s very interesting,” Chopra stated.

Chopra on selectors’ decision of not sending Shaw or Padikkal to England

The cricketer-turned-commentator backed the selectors’ decision of not flying Prithvi Shaw or Devdutt Padikkal for the red-ball cricket series in England. Chopra concluded the video while saying:

“When the selectors were asked to send either Prithvi Shaw or Devdutt Padikkal, who are currently in Sri Lanka, they said nothing and that they cannot send them. They are here for a reason and you already have replacements.

“If they are not sending Prithvi Shaw and Devdutt Padikkal, I think it is also justified because they will play there first and Sri Lanka is still on the red list when you talk about England. A long hard quarantine, getting them ready and you don’t even know whether they can play because Mayank Agarwal and Abhimanyu Easwaran are already there,” he signed off.

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