The performance of the middle order of the Indian side has always invited criticism and it is believed that the dismissal of top-order batsmen is the key to success against India. India successfully defended the title of Asia Cup and emerged out as the best team of the tournament. However, the performance of the middle-order batsmen was not up to the mark. The Indian team played fifty overs to achieve the target of 223 runs which vividly depicts that the middle-order of the team would fail to chase the large total if the top order batsmen fail to score runs. Let's analyze the role which should be assigned to the batsmen of middle-order;
The batsman who will get the chance to bat at No.4 will have to build the innings for the team. A good platform is necessary for the finishers to wind up the game. Ambati Rayudu and Dinesh Kartik are competing with each other to get the chance of batting at No.4. In Asia Cup, Rayudu performed better than Kartik but more chances should be given to both the players so that they can prove themselves.
The world cup will be held in England and Dinesh Karthik's struggled in both test series and in limited overs format. It could be a good move to test KL Rahul and Ajinkya Rahane at the position. Out of the four players, the best among them should be given the chance to play at No.4.
It is a known fact that MS Dhoni would be playing in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019. The former India captain's finishing abilities have deteriorated drastically in the recent times and it would be a foolish decision to assign him the role of a finisher. His slow strike rate has worsened the conditions for the team during a chase.
Dhoni should be allowed to bat at No.5 so that he may take his time before hitting the boundaries. Once, Dhoni gets the rhythm, he has the potential of smashing any bowler in the last few overs which will turn the tables for India.
Kedar Jadhav is perfect for this position. He has a calm head on his shoulders and he is accomplished in hitting boundaries in tough situations. He is a big match winner and one of the best finds for the Indian team in the last few years. His composure is phenomenal and that's why he deserves to get the chance to bat at No.6. He not only scores runs in tough situations but also takes wickets whenever he has been asked to bowl. He is playing a great role for the team.
Ravindra Jadeja and Ha Pandya are the two all-rounders competing for this position. Pandya was getting chances ahead of Jadeja but he failed to perform in the series. That's why Jadeja got the chance to play in the last test match against England where he took 4 wickets and scored 86 runs in the first innings and showed that he is better than Pandya in all aspects. Jadeja's performance in Asia Cup cannot be ignored. Hardik has better hitting abilities than Jadeja but Jaddu is more consistent with bat and his bowling is much better than that of Pandya. Out of these two players, Jadeja might be preferred ahead of Pandya.Published 29 Sep 2018, 11:47 IST