Former Indian Test opener Aakash Chopra wants India to have at least six bowling options for India in the first T20I with Jadeja assuming bigger role in batting line-up. India will start building up for the next year's T20 World Cup with the three-match T20I series against Australia.
One of the central focus for the major teams in the next year or so will remain the T20 World Cup that will be played in India after it was last played in the same country in 2016. The Indian team will also want to test their bench strength and start building up for the ICC mega event after they were horribly short on planning in the 2019 Cricket World Cup, where they couldn't go beyond the semi-final despite some match-winners at their disposal.
One of the major factors that impacted India's performance in the ODI series loss against Australia was the lack of bowling options as they struggled in absence of Hardik Pandya the bowler. Keeping that in mind, renowned cricket expert Aakash Chopra wants India to shoulder Ravindra Jadeja with more batting responsibility and make sure there are six bowling options for the first of three-match T20I series that will be played in Canberra today.
"I want to go a little radical for the T20Is. Would like to open with Dhawan and Rahul, followed by Kohli and either Iyer or Pandey. But at no.5, Pandya bats with Jadeja also coming up the order at 6, taking more responsibility and then we have five bowling options plus Jadeja. Batting won't suffer as Sundar can bat at 7, then four specialist bowlers Bumrah, Shami, Natarajan and Chahal. India must not loose Hardik Pandya the batsman in pursuit of an extra bowling option, so with these many options, such a situation shouldn't arise," Chopra opined in a video uploaded by Cricbuzz.
Former Indian pacer also agreed with Aakash Chopra that there should be six bowling options. He also wants to see Sanju Samson in action given he played for India in the last T20I series they played in New Zealand.
"I agree with Chopra, we have Sundar at 7, so we can go for six bowling options. One thing is for sure given the pitch, Sundar, Jadeja and Chahal have to play and three pacers. India can look to give chances to Manish Pandey or Sanju Samson as well. Deepak Chahar and Natarajan must play as they will not be part of the red-ball side. So these two pacers and one from Bumrah/Shami/Saini. Hopefully, Samson also plays given he was part of the New Zealand T20Is and T20 World Cup is also taking place next year," Ashish Nehra stated.