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Shikhar Dhawan should definitely open in all three ODIs: Aakash Chopra

Shikhar Dhawan was sidelined after the first T20I against England
Shikhar Dhawan was sidelined after the first T20I against England
Kartik Iyer
ANALYST
Modified 22 Mar 2021
News

Former cricketer-turned-commentator Aakash Chopra has opined that Shikhar Dhawan should open the batting for Team India in all three ODIs against England.

Dhawan has been named in India's 18-member squad for the ODI series against the Eoin Morgan-led side. The southpaw was dropped from the T20I playing XI after a failure in the first encounter against the visitors.

While previewing the India-England ODI series on Star Sports, Aakash Chopra expressed hope of Dhawan plying his trade at the top of the order in all three matches.

"Shikhar Dhawan should definitely open in all three matches in my opinion because he plays only one format now, so you should give him the chance to open," said Chopra.

While pointing out that Shreyas Iyer should take his customary No. 4 spot, Chopra observed that Team India might find it difficult to accommodate both KL Rahul and Rishabh Pant in the playing XI.

"Shreyas Iyer will be batting at No.4. The big question will be if you can fit both KL Rahul and Rishabh Pant in the team. Do it if possible but if not, don't really feel bad about it. But for me the one objective is to win the series." added Aakash Chopra.

With Hardik Pandya likely to bat at No. 6 in the ODIs, KL Rahul and Rishabh Pant will be fighting it out for the No. 5 position, unless the Karnataka batsman is played as an opener.

It will be interesting to see if Virat Kohli and the team management persist with Rahul as the wicketkeeper-batsman or opt for the in-form Pant.


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India should play both Kuldeep Yadav and Chahal: Aakash Chopra

Aakash Chopra wants Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal to play in unison
Aakash Chopra wants Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal to play in unison

Aakash Chopra hopes that Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal will be given a chance to spin their web of magic together.

"You can try what you want in fast bowling but in the spin department you should please play both Kuldeep and Chahal because if you don't play them here also, then what will Kuldeep do. You don't play him in the Tests or T20s, if you don't play the ODIs also then what's the point," said Chopra.
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The 43-year-old also questioned the exclusion of Navdeep Saini, Deepak Chahar and Axar Patel from the Indian ODI squad.

"The question that comes to my mind is that if Navdeep Saini was in the T20I team, then why not the ODI team. He didn't play a single match, Deepak Chahar is another name. Axar Patel is in the Test and T20I teams but not in the ODIs, why so?," asked Aakash Chopra.

While Navdeep Saini and Deepak Chahar did not get a chance in the T20I series against England, Axar Patel was benched after the first match.

Published 22 Mar 2021, 15:58 IST
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