The Indian cricket team is set to battle a huge dilemma over which player to pick for the No. 5 spot in the team. While KL Rahul has been playing the role for a while in India’s ODI team, the manner which Ishan Kishan fulfilled the responsibility at the position impressed everyone. In fact, there are many who feel Ishan should continue to play at the No. 5 spot for India, even at the cost of Rahul sitting on the bench. There are however, those too, who think otherwise.
A form vs record debate had triggered between Gambhir and Mohammad Kaif on Star Sports over Ishan Kishan vs KL Rahul selection for the No. 5 spot. Gambhir feels India should avoid ‘blunder’ by not selecting Ishan over Rahul in the ODI team.
“India will make a huge blunder if they don’t play Ishan Kishan ahead of KL Rahul,” Gambhir said in a chat on Star Sports.
Gambhir explained his point, suggesting the consistency Ishan has shown over the last few ODI innings, be it as an opener or in the middle-order, warrants him a place in the team.
“The point is, when you’re gearing up to win the World Cup, you don’t see the name, you judge by their form. You choose the player who can perform and win you the World Cup,” Gambhir said.
“I feel Ishan Kishan has done everything he needs to do to be a frontrunner,” he explained.
During the debate, Gambhir had even asked Kaif he would be batting for Rahul’s selection had someone like Virat Kohli or Rohit Sharma scored half-centuries in consecutive matches like Ishan.
“Just because he is Ishan Kishan and hasn’t played a lot of international cricket, you’re saying that KL Rahul should play before him,” he said.
“But if Virat Kohli or Rohit Sharma were in place of Ishan Kishan, would KL Rahul be able to replace them? The answer is ‘no’,” Gambhir asserted.
KL Rahul is back in the Indian squad for the Asia Cup 2023 and is expected to be available for selection as Rohit Sharma’s men take on Pakistan in their Super 4 clash on Sunday. Even for India’s World Cup team, Ishan and Rahul have been roped in as the two wicket-keeper batters.
Though there will be competition between them for the spot behind the stumps, both of them can also feature in the playing XI if the team management decides to bench Shreyas Iyer.
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