India batsman KL Rahul’s constant failure in the opening slot has given Rohit Sharma a ray of hope. Chief selector MSK Prasad had already hinted that they might consider Rohit as the opener for the three-match Test series versus South Africa.
After Hanuma Vihari’s brilliant performance with the willow in the West Indies, the 32-year-old’s chances of being a part of the middle order in the Test team looked impossible.
Former India batsman Pravin Amre said it’s the right time to accommodate Rohit in the Test team as he is in form and has loads of confidence.
The flamboyant right-hander was in red-hot form during the 2019 World Cup, where he hit five centuries and ended up as the highest run-scorer in the mega event.
“The way he batted in the World Cup, hitting five hundreds in the tournament, this is the best time and opportunity to try him out because his confidence is very high right now and the team should back him. His experience will be valuable for the team,” Amre told Rediff.com.
“In a Test match, you need specialists. I feel all these problems started because Prithvi Shaw is unavailable (serving an eight-month ban for failing dope test) as the opener for various reasons. Our middle order is quite strong so all the more reasons that Rohit, who I feel deserves another chance in Tests, should be tried as the opener,” he added.
Rohit has been a limited-overs specialist, but somehow, has not been able to seal his spot in Test cricket.
Amre, who featured in 11 Tests and 37 ODIs for India, felt Hitman had the all-important technique to succeed as an opening batsman in red-ball cricket.
“Rohit scored a lot of runs during the World Cup which was played in England where you need some technique to survive.”
“In a Test match, the first choice is always specialist openers, but if you don’t have a choice then you can go to some experienced player like Rohit, because he can bring a lot to the table. And if he clicks, then imagine how strong our batting line-up will be.”
“When we play against strong teams like South Africa, the opener’s role is very important. We are playing in home conditions where Rohit has done well. If you remember, he scored two hundreds in his first two Tests against the West Indies in Sachin Tendulkar’s last series (in 2013), so he can definitely make a difference,” the 51-year-old opined.
Fans would be hoping that Pravin Amre’s words come true, and Rohit Sharma finally gets to play and cement his place in the Test team.
India will lock horns with South Africa at home in a three-match T20I series, starting September 15, followed by a three-Test series, scheduled to take place from October 2.