India vs Australia: ‘There’s no comparison’ - Gautam Gambhir on Virat Kohli vs Steve Smith in white-ball cricket
In 242 matches, the Indian captain has amassed 11,609 runs at an average of 59.84 and with a strike rate of 93.28.Updated: Jan 13, 2020 13:19 IST
Former Indian cricketer Gautam Gambhir believes Team India captain Virat Kohli is a far, far better” batsman than Australian Steve Smith as far as white-ball cricket is concerned. “Virat Kohli is far far better than Steve Smith in white-ball cricket. There’s no comparison. I would not compare Kohli to Smith in white-ball cricket. I would actually want to see what spot Smith bats on,” Gambhir told the host broadcasters on the eve of India’s first ODI against Australia.
“Are they’re going to push him at no 4 or would have him bat at 3 and send Labuschagne at no 4,” he further added.
Virat Kohli has been an absolute run-machine in ODIs and has already notched up 43 hundreds in the format. In 242 matches, the Indian captain has amassed 11,609 runs at an average of 59.84 and with a strike rate of 93.28. Steve Smith, on the other hand, has not an entirely prolific ODI career - in 118 matches, he has managed 3810 runs at an average of 41.41 and with a strike rate of 86.31.
Gambhir has also backed Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami to trouble the Australian batting order with with sheer pace in the ODI series. “I’m really excited to see how these two guys bowl against some of the top batters like David Warner or Aaron Finch in that kind of form in white-ball cricket on flat wickets.
“But the best part is that they have got pace. They can actually get wickets with that sheer pace and the quickness in the air as well,’ Gambhir opined. Gambhir feels the Indian team management did a wrong thing by keeping Shami out of the World Cup semi-finals on a seamer-friendly Old Trafford track.
“I’ve always believed that when you’re playing on flacid wickets and smaller grounds like the Wankhede or Bangalore, your bowlers need to step up. The kind of form Mohammed Shami is in, it’s a big plus for India that he has done really well in white-ball cricket,” Gambhir said.