Former Indian opening batter Wasim Jaffer opened up on who should take the new ball in the second T20I against New Zealand in Lucknow on Sunday (January 29). Jaffer opined that captain Hardik Pandya should continue with the new ball, with Shivam Mavi as his partner.
Pandya has recently been impressive with the new ball in limited-overs cricket and has given India wickets upfront. The Baroda-born all-rounder dismissed Finn Allen in the first over of the third ODI in Indore, but the right-handed batter got the better of Pandya in the first T20I, hitting him for consecutive boundaries.
Speaking on ESPN Cricinfo's Timeout, the 44-year-old felt Arshdeep Singh could bowl at any phase of the innings; hence, Pandya and Mavi should take the new ball. Jaffer said:
"I think Hardik Pandya and Shivam Mavi are better options. Pandya bowls well with the new ball, although he was slightly expensive in the previous game. But you expect him to make a good comeback and it's better if he bowls 2-3 overs."
"Pandya can bowl an over with the new ball and Arshdeep Singh can come after. Arshdeep can bowl in the middle overs and can return at the death. So, I think one over in the powerplay from Arshdeep and two in the death."
Nevertheless, both Pandya and Mavi struggled in the first T20I against New Zealand, finishing with figures of 3-0-33-0 and 2-0-19-1 respectively. The 19th over of the innings saw Mavi dismiss visiting captain Mitchell Santner.
"If India have to win, Suryakumar Yadav must click" - Wasim Jaffer
When asked who would be the impact player for India to win, Jaffer said Suryakumar Yadav and Kuldeep Yadav would have to fire with the bat and ball, respectively. He added:
"I think the top-order batters must step up and the impact player in this team is Suryakumar Yadav. If India have to win, Suryakumar Yadav must click. I expect one of the top three and Suryakumar Yadav is an important player for me. In bowling, I expect Kuldeep Yadav to get India breakthroughs."
Kuldeep Yadav had a match to remember in Ranchi as he finished with figures of 4-0-20-1, while Suryakumar Yadav scored a majestic 34-ball 47 before falling to Ish Sodhi as New Zealand wrapped up a 21-run victory.
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