Former Indian middle-order batsman VVS Laxman has picked young Shubman Gill ahead of Mayank Agarwal as the desired opener alongside Rohit Sharma in the WTC Final. India have also picked Mayank Agarwal as the backup opener and with Gill scoring a half-century in the practice match, it will be tough for Mayank to get a chance in the all important WTC Final.
Mayank lost his spot after the Melbourne Test, in which India made a strong comeback after the historic 36 all out. Rohit had come out of quarantine and he was the designated opener. With Gill performing well in the Melbourne Test, it was quite hard to leave him out. Thus, Mayank was dropped from the XI and then has been warming the bench.
VVS Laxman is also of the same view as he picked his first-choice openers in Shubman Gill and Rohit Sharma. He also opined that although both Gill and Mayank have played in England for India A, the former should be preferred over the latter as it will help in maintaining his continuity.
“I think the most important decision is who is going to open with Rohit because we have got two options who are talented and have had the experience of playing in England for India A,” he said while speaking on the show Cricket Connected on Star Sports.
“I always prefer continuity. I think that the way young Shubman Gill showed his character in the Test match in Brisbane, even though he was off his best against England, I feel he has found form in the warm-up match. I would love to see him continue to open with Rohit,” he added.
“We can’t forget the contribution of Mayank Agarwal. In the home series against South Africa he had a fabulous Test series, scoring a double hundred. He impressed everyone on his Test debut against Australia in the Boxing Day Test,” he concluded.