Cricket News Today: Rohit Sharma backs Iyer at No.4, Marnus Labuschagne ready for India challenge and more - 7th Jan 2020
Amidst the never-ending No.4 conundrum that has troubled Indian cricket, fans have a young stalwart - Shreyas Iyer- emerging as a deserving candidate to fill in the spot. Moreover, India's limited-overs vice-captain Rohit Sharma has also backed Iyer to steer India's middle-order while batting at the No.4 position.
Meanwhile, Marnus Labuschagne, who has set the world ablaze with his recent run-scoring spree has expressed his excitement to play against Virat Kohli and Co. The Australians are set to lock horns with India in a three-match ODI series starting from January 14.
Many eminent personalities, including Indian skipper Virat Kohli, have expressed their disapproval regarding ICC's proposal of four-day Tests. However, Cricket South Africa, a board which is currently going through a rebuilding phase has come in support of ICC's controversial proposal as a bright prospect in the near future.
Elsewhere, despite clinching a victory in the second Test against South Africa, England have another addition to their long list of injury woes as their opener Rory Burns is set to miss the upcoming Sri Lanka series.
Now let us look at the cricket news today in detail.
#1 Rohit Sharma backs Iyer to 'nail the No.4 spot'
India vice-captain Rohit Sharma has come in support of Shreyas Iyer for the latter to cement his place at the No.4 spot in the national side. Sharma praised Iyer's temperament and his calm demeanour at the crease and stated that he was the right person to slot into one of the most important batting positions.
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Rohit, who was hugely impressed by Iyer's attacking instincts in West Indies and his cool head against the same side at home, was quoted as saying by Hindustan Times -
"Shreyas knows that he will now bat at No.4 for years to come. He feels secure and can now execute his plans freely."
#2 Marnus Labuschagne ready for India challenge
Australia's latest batting sensation Marnus Labuschagne has expressed his desire to perform well in tough Indian conditions in the forthcoming ODI series beginning January 14. Labuschagne, who finished as the highest Test run-getter of 2019 eclipsing the likes of Steve Smith and Mayank Agarwal feels that beating India in their backyard is one of the toughest challenges but feels that he is up for it.
Labushagne was quoted as saying by cricket.com.au -
"Whenever you play India, it's a tough series because they're a very tough opposition. They've got great batters and bowlers, so it's going to be a challenge... But as a player you always want to test yourself against the best opposition in the toughest conditions, and there's nothing tougher than India in India."
#3 CSA release statement supporting four-day Tests
Cricket South Africa (CSA) released a statement supporting ICC's controversial proposal of four-day Test matches.
The first country to host a four-day Test match in 2017 against Zimbabwe, South Africa have been in favour of supporting this move for the past two years and declared that it was CSA's official policy to support four-day Tests. The statement read as follows -
“In view of an unsourced and misleading report in the media this morning, please be advised that it is Cricket South Africa’s official policy to support four-day Test match cricket... We, in fact, hosted the first official four-day test match between ourselves and Zimbabwe a couple of years ago.”
However, India's stance was made pretty much clear when current Indian captain Virat Kohli and batting legend Sachin Tendulkar publicly opposed the proposal.
#4 Rory Burns to miss Sri Lanka tour
In-form English opener Rory Burns is set to miss England's tour of Sri Lanka featuring two Test matches after the left-hander ruptured his ankle ligaments while playing football with his teammates during a practice session in Cape Town and underwent a surgery in London on Monday.
The surgery will force Burns to be out of action for four months and he will, in turn, miss the Sri Lanka tour scheduled to take place in March. The England and Wales Cricket Board released an injury update stating -
"Rory Burns has undergone surgery on ruptured ankle ligaments. Get well soon, Rory!"
#5 Mandeep Singh bats for DRS in Ranji Trophy
Punjab captain Mandeep Singh has come out in support of using the Decision Review System (DRS) in Ranji Trophy encounters to tackle average umpiring. Singh talked to reporters and expressed his concerns as Punjab went down to Delhi via first-innings deficit.
The match was marred with controversies as youngster Shubman Gill was given out twice incorrectly by umpire Paschim Pathak. The first decision was overturned as Gill refused to leave the pitch and allegedly abused the umpire, however, Gill had to make his way back to the pavilion in the second innings post a howler from Pathak. Singh said -
“I don’t know what the other captains are saying but I know when we talk to each other, everyone is in favour of having DRS in the domestic cricket... He (Shubman Gill) was our main wicket and getting a raw decision twice didn’t do any good to us in the context of the match."
Modified 08 Jan 2020, 17:28 IST