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Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Middle-order problem for the Indians

Yuvraj Singh at Adelaide OvalImage via Wikipedia
The Indians might have made a good start to the Asia Cup today, by beating Bangladesh comfortably. The bowlers were not so great but they had good practice against the weaker team today. Hopefully, they will improve their performance against the Pakistan & Lankan teams later. But, that is not the subject of this post.

The middle-order saw Virat Kohli come out at No.3, followed by Rohit Sharma, MS Dhoni and finally Suresh Raina. Is this the right order that can turn out for the Indians in this Asian Cup? Of course, Yuvraj Singh and Sachin Tendulkar are options but since they are not available in Sri Lanka, we need to look at the correct order in which the current players can flourish.

Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma are the more sedate batsmen, though capable of playing the big shots. Suresh Raina has done well at No.3 slot while MS Dhoni has become the No.1 batsmen by playing various innings at No.4. Ravindra Jadeja has been given the all-rounder position in the Indian eleven, in place of Yusuf Pathan. He neither has the shots that a typical batsmen at No.7 needs.

Maybe, that is the rationale behind sending Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma ahead of MSD and Raina. Jadeja can come up earlier also but he has already lost a match (even though in T20s) by playing on the slower side. Hence, this option may not be tried once again by the think-tank for some time now.

MSD and Raina will be the best batsmen to hit out in the slog overs and hence they need to come down the order. If any early wickets fall, the order can be changed.

What can be tried also is to send Harbhajan Singh or Praveen Kumar higher in the order at times when the faster bowlers are trying to bounce out.

What is your opinion on the middle order issue?
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