Former Indian cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar feels that Sri Lankan captain and all-rounder Dasun Shanaka doesn't have a defined role in the team. The 56-year-old also urged Shanaka to bat up the order to provide some stability in the Sri Lankan batting unit.
Manjrekar's words came ahead of the Group 1 encounter between Sri Lanka and West Indies in Match 35 of the ongoing T20 World Cup 2021. The fixture will be a replay of the final of the T20 World Cup 2012.
Sri Lanka, who are already out of contention for the knockouts, will enter the match on the back of a defeat to England. West Indies, on the other hand, have won one out of three games. The Keiron Pollard-led side was victorious in their last fixture against Bangladesh.
Sanjay Manjrekar, while previewing the SL-WI tie, posted a video on his official Instagram account. You can watch his video below:
Manjrekar, 56, expressed that he fails to understand Dasun Shanaka's role in the Sri Lankan XI. While mentioning that Shanaka has a good temperament, the former cricketer suggested that he bat at a higher slot for his nation. Manjrekar said:
"I don't know what role captain Dasun Shanaka has in the Sri Lankan side. He bowls no more than two overs and doesn't even bat in the top 5. I just wonder in the unpredictable Sri Lankan batting line-up, maybe Shanaka could go up the order and provide some kind of steadiness. Because this guy seems to have a very good temperament."
Manjrekar feels that Roston Chase should open the batting for West Indies
The former cricketer-turned-expert also weighed in on the idea of playing Roston Chase as an opener for the Caribbean team. Chase, who made his T20I debut for the defending champions in their last encounter against Bangladesh, played a rescuing knock for his side. Chase batted at No. 3 and scored 39 runs in 43 balls.
Manjrekar, in his video, opined that Pollard should play Roston Chase as an opener alongside Evin Lewis or Chris Gayle. Slotting Chase up the order, while providing West Indies with much-needed stability in their batting line-up, will allow power-hitters in Russell and Pollard himself to play freely. Manjrekar concluded:
"I wonder whether Roston Chase, who batted up the order in the last game, can start opening the innings with Lewis or Gayle in order to provide stability up the order. Power-hitters like Pollard and Russell can come afterwards."
Sri Lanka and West Indies will lock horns at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi on November 4.
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