The disastrous batting by Indian batters against New Zealand has raised several questions from fans and critics alike. One of the questions which top the list after the terrible performance is why was Ishan Kishan promoted to open the batting in place of Rohit Sharma. When the pundits saw Kishan walk onto the field ahead of Rohit, they were perplexed and when the move backfired, they were enraged. Opening the inning alongside KL Rahul, the Mumbai Indian opener Kishan could only manage to score 4 runs in 8 balls. The reshuffle forced Rohit Sharma to bat in the number 3 position which is the fixed spot of Virat Kohli. When none of them could make a big contribution to the scoreboard, it left a daunting question on everyone’s mind, why was the move made in the first place.
Mahela Jayawardene, the coach of Rohit Sharma and Kishan at Mumbai Indians, came out blazing with some tough questions on ESPNcricinfo’s T20 timeout. He said that pulling players away from their natural positions and then expecting them to perform was a bad idea, to begin with. In reply, India’s batting coach Vikram Rathour said, “Ishan has done exceptionally well as an opener in IPL and in the past for the Indian team as well. And about who takes the call – it was the whole management who sits together and takes this call and of course, Rohit is a part of that group.” He further added that Rohit Sharma too agreed with the fact that if Kishan was left behind, then Indian would have had a cluttered middle order with 3 lefties in the form of Kishan, Pant, and Jadeja. Therefore, they decided to send Kishan to open.
India is going to play Afghanistan in their next match, which is a must-win for them. They are already reliant on other results to go in their favor, to make it to the next stage of the tournament. A loss against Afghanistan will seal their exit from the tournament.