Can KL Rahul and Shreyas Iyer compete in the Asia Cup 2023? Will they immediately be taken into consideration for the World Cup if they are not? Videos of Rahul practicing keeping drills went viral a day after reports indicated that both he and Iyer are questionable for the Asia Cup because their bodies are not ready for the strain of 50 Overs cricket. The supporters are now more optimistic about Rahul’s return to the Indian team after a protracted injury absence, even though it still doesn’t imply he is well enough to bat for 50 overs.
Since incurring a thigh injury in the IPL 2023 match against Royal Challengers Bangalore, Rahul has not participated in any competitive matches. He even needed surgery in London and just recently began hitting in the nets. His main issue will be building up enough leg strength so that they can withstand the strain of keeping for 50 overs before letting him bat, or the other way around.
Rahul is essential to India’s World Cup and Asia Cup preparations. He is India’s preferred keeper-batter in ODIs despite his fewer runs in T20Is and Tests. He has some of the better recent statistics when hitting at No. 5. If he is not totally healthy, that puts India in a difficult situation since they will not only need to find a keeper but also a middle-order batsman.
Concerningly, Shreyas Iyer’s situation. The right-hander is making a full recovery from a back problem that kept him out of the IPL 2023. He virtually certainly won’t be able to attend the Asia Cup, if rumors are to be believed. If that is the case, his sole opportunity to demonstrate his readiness for the World Cup will be a three-match home series against Australia. Iyer has been the No. 4 batter for India in ODIs for a while now. He consistently performs in practically every circumstance, earning himself that position. India’s enduring issue of lacking a reliable No.4 will reappear in his absence.
If Iyer and Rahul are not available, who will represent India?
The administration of the Indian squad is planning for the best and hoping for the worst. If the three ODIs against the West Indies are any indication, Rohit Sharma, the captain, and Rahul Dravid, the coach, have already begun to hunt for backups. If Rahul and Iyer are unable to recover in time, who are India’s backups? Suryakumar Yadav and Sanju Samson seem to be the front-runners in terms of personnel. However, they might not be the direct substitutions in the starting XI.
While batting in the first five positions in ODIs, SKY had relatively poor results. The No. 6 place, where he batted in the final two ODIs in the West Indies, seems to be best suited for him. In reality, he hasn’t achieved the needed success in this format when batting at any number in this format. In that circumstance, neither Iyer nor Rahul, the batter, may be replaced by him.
Samson has never had a good run in any format, although his statistics in ODIs are strong. And they’ve always happened when I was hitting No. 4 or lower. He can be Rahul’s solution, but in recent years, Ishan Kishan has consistently emerged as the top contender in Rahul’s absence.
If Rahul and Iyer are not healthy, Virat Kohli might be asked to give up his No. 3 place.
In the worst case, India may decide to entirely reorganize their batting order if Rahul and Iyer are deemed unfit for the Asia Cup. Kishan must open if he plays. He can be supported by the numbers. Where does Shubman Gill bat if Kishan is paired with skipper Rohit at the start? It’s challenging.
In domestic cricket and in the beginning of his career, Gill has batted at No. 3 or lower. Virat Kohli would have to vacate that position if he were assigned the responsibility of batting at No. 3. There is now no better ODI cricketer at No. 3 in the world than Virat Kohli, so that decision may be the most difficult in recent memory. Of his 12898 runs in ODIs, 10777 runs have come while batting at No. 3. At that position, he has 39 out of 46 ODI hundreds.
But being the team player that he is, he would be aware of the importance of having a reliable No. 4 in case Iyer is out. In important competitions like the Asia Cup and World Cup, asking Gill to bat at that position may not be the best strategy. In that scenario, Kohli may lose position, with Hardik Pandya at No. 5 and either Samson or SKY at No. 6 following. Hardik can bat at number six if
Rahul is healthy, which appears to be the more likely scenario.
What other choices does India have?
India must move Hardik up to No. 4 if they don’t want to change Virat Kohli’s batting position. He has recently batted in the top four in the IPL and has also played for India. In accordance with the plan, Rohit then debuts with Gill, moving either Samson or SKY up to No. 6. However, Rahul must be healthy for this to be possible. If not, Kishan becomes India’s first-choice keeper and must open unless they wish to give Samson the gloves.
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