Sanjay Manjrekar takes a subtle dig at Ambati Rayudu and says this star Indian player should bat at No.4

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India still haven’t found the perfect number four, claims Sanjay Manjrekar

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SportsCafe Desk

03/25/2019

Sanjay Manjrekar reckons that the Indian cricket team are still lacking the perfect number four batsman in the batting order ahead of the 2019 ICC ODI World Cup in England & Wales. The former India cricketer singled out Vijay Shankar as his choice to fill the void in the current batting line-up.

The Indian cricket team, along with hosts England, are labelled as favourites to lift the 2019 ICC ODI World Cup which will start on May 30. Virat Kohli-led India are one of the strong contenders to go all the way but one glaring problem that the Indian team will face is who comes in to bat at number four. Former India cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar reckons that the question definitely needs to be addressed ahead of the global showpiece which starts in few months time.

“There was only one little gap that needed to be filled which is number four and getting some exciting options at four, five, six. They tried quite a few people and I don’t begrudge them that. I don’t think that was wrong. It’s just disappointing that the players have not used the opportunity to cement their places.

“Like, Ambati Rayudu had a great opportunity. He got a 90 in New Zealand and I thought that’s done. But then he fails in the next few innings and then a good ball will suddenly get him out and you sort of lose faith in him as the number four,” Manjrekar was quoted as saying by Reuters.

Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan will most likely lead the Indian team at the top of the batting order in England and Virat Kohli will most likely come to bat at number three. Manjrekar, who played 37 Tests and 74 ODIs for India before, added that SRH all-rounder Vijay Shankar was his pick to fill the number four spot.

“Your number four has got to have a little bit of class because in England it’s perfectly possible that you are 20-2 so you got to have somebody who will just weather the storm and then take India close to 300 runs. That perfect number four India still haven’t found and I don’t think they will find it now.

“So when India goes into the World Cup, it’s a class team with genuine class in bowling and batting but with a soft underbelly which will be their middle order. Vijay Shankar is my current number four -- not the ideal number four but from the candidates that we have, he is my number four,” Manjrekar added.

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