India tour of England: Sunil Gavaskar offers unique solution to India’s opening conundrum, ‘let both Mayank & Shubman play county matches and decide’ – Former India cricketer Sunil Gavaskar has expressed his opinion on selecting Team India’s opening pair for the England series. Gavaskar suggested that both Mayank Agarwal and Shubman Gill should open the batting in county games and then Virat Kohli should take the call seeing their performances.
“Mayank Agarwal has done well as an opener, has hit double century twice. It’s good news that BCCI and especially Jay Shah has taken the initiative that India will play county matches. You can decide there who among Shubman Gill and Mayank Agarwal will open or India. Send both of them to open together, Rohit Sharma is a certainty and so he can be rested. The match will tell show has the better technique for English conditions,” Sunil Gavaskar told on Sports Tak.
Gill was picked ahead of Mayank in the England series and World Test Championship final against New Zealand. Gill failed to put up good performances on both occasions.
Gill had an extra-ordinary debut series against Australia in Australia where he scored 259 runs at an average of 51.80 in three matches. However, there was a sudden drop in his performance after Australia series as he could only score 119 runs in four games at an average of 19.83
Shubman Gill vs Australia
Matches – 3
Runs – 259
AVG – 51.80
Shubman Gill vs England
Matches – 4
Runs – 119
AVG – 19.83
Shubman Gill vs New Zealand in WTC final
Gavaskar pointed that there is a flow in Gill’s technique. He is concerned about his foot moment.
“Gill has no footwork, he goes forward only. In India also he does not even try to go and play on the back foot and he plays across the line because of the same reason. Changing the balance while getting on the back foot because of the short length, it gets difficult. He will have to work hard, there is no doubt on his talent,” Gavaskar added.
On the other hand, Mayank Agarwal has scored 1052 runs in his 14 match Test career with an average of 45.74. He has two double-hundreds and three centuries in it. So it will be very hard for the team management to keep him out of the playing XI for too long.
Earlier, former India cricketer VVS Laxman also pointed that Gill needs to fix his footwork. “This is something (Foot movement against incoming deliveries) Shubman Gill requires to address, especially keeping in mind the England series in which Stuart Broad and James Anderson will test the right-hander with the ball coming in,” Laxman said on Star Sports.
Former India cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar is also concerned about Gill footwork. “He (Gill) will have to work on his footwork. It is something that is very obvious for everyone to see. He is getting out to the ball that is leaving and the ball that’s coming back in. It’s a problem, and like I mentioned in the first innings, it’s always the front foot,” Manjrekar said on espncricinfo.com.