Former Pakistan skipper Inzamam-ul-Haq has claimed that India's young batsmen have done a far better job compared to their senior counterparts in recent times. He also reckoned that if the experienced players continue to fail, India are bound to find themselves in troubled waters.
India's middle-order has struggled immensely in the ongoing series, with skipper Virat Kohli and his deputy Ajinkya Rahane faring miserably with the willow in hand. While Rishabh Pant played a key role in India's earlier Test wins Down Under and in the home series against England, with him also failing in the series, India's batting has turned more vulnerable than ever. The Indian middle-order has averaged a sub-par 28.36 since the start of 2020, with both Kohli and Rahane averaging in the 20s.
The ongoing series has been no different, with Rahane and Kohli amassing 95 and 124 runs in the first three Tests at 19 and 24.80. Reflecting on India's batting woes, Pakistan great Inzamam-ul-Haq opined that India's youngsters have been rescuing the side from precarious situations in recent times, but the contribution from the seasoned guys hasn't been satisfactory.
"If you look at team India's batters, Virat Kohli hasn't scored a hundred in nearly two years. The case is the same with Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane is also struggling. Youngsters have been bailing the team out of difficult situations in recent times," Inzamam said on his Youtube channel, reported India Today.
"Rishabh Pant scored a lot of runs, Ravindra Jadeja also contributed and (Ravichandran) Ashwin as well. The young guns have contributed a lot more in comparison to the experienced guys," he said.
"In a big series, if India's experienced players don't lead from the front, then they are bound to find themselves in trouble. I have been observing India’s performance from Australia. They have played some very good Test cricket. They have won series’ away from home in tough conditions. But the major role in these wins was played by the young players," said Inzamam.
He also reckoned that the poor run of the seniors like Pujara, Kohli and Rahane, has put the young players under extreme pressure.
"Virat is the No. 1 player in the world, Pujara and Rahane are very good Test players. But if there is such a big gap between their big scores or hundreds, the youngsters are bound to come under pressure. The young players have been doing well but the experienced ones must lead the way. If Team India’s younger players are constantly put under pressure, they too will struggle. This is exactly what is happening in England," he explained.
The 1992 World Cup winner signed off by saying that things will change for the good if India's big guns start leading the batting from the front, like on day three of the recently-concluded Leeds Test.
"Things change when the big guns perform. Look at this Test itself. When Pujara and Kohli were involved in that partnership, Team India's hopes of a comeback were suddenly raised though they had conceded a 350-run lead. It could have happened (comeback) had they converted their partnership into a big one, say around 200-250. The pressure would have been back on England then."