‘Once Kohli is back there is no guarantee...’: IND legend 'hopes' debutant Shreyas ‘plays to his potential'
It was an emotional moment for Shreyas Iyer as the right-handed battter was seen kissing his cap after it was handed to him by batting legend Sunil Gavaskar. The 26-year-old, who burst into the international circuit back in 2017, played his maiden Test on Thursday in the opening encounter of the two-match series between India and New Zealand.
Iyer made full use of the opportunity and played a solid knock of 75 from 136 deliveries, which was a mix of both aggression and rock-solid defense. He will now resume India's attack on Day 2 along with all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja as the hosts have added 258/4 before the close of play.
Former India cricketer VVS Laxman, who is part of the Star Sports experts panel, the official broadcaster of the series, was impressed by the debutant and hailed the moment when he received his Test cap by none other than Gavaskar.
“What a moment for Shreyas Iyer, receiving his cap from Sunil Gavaskar, a role model he must have had growing up in Mumbai. It’s a huge moment for any representing India in Test matches and wearing that cap I’m sure is a beautiful moment for him,” said Laxman after the close of play on Day 1.
He also hoped Iyer to play up to his potential as he is not sure if the 26-year-old will be considered for the second and final Test with team skipper Virat Kohli joining the boys in Mumbai, the venue for the match.
“I want him to make it a memorable Test match because once Virat Kohli comes back, there is no guarantee that he will play in the XI. So I hope he plays to his potential and makes it count,” he added.
Iyer along with Jadeja will look to guide India to a gigantic first-inning total thus handing their bowlers a cushion when the Kiwis come to bat.
Meanwhile, Jadeja continued his impressive run with the bat and fetched 50 runs from 100 deliveries. Apart from the duo, wicketkeeper-batter Wriddhiman Saha, R Ashwin, and Axar Patel are yet to bat, followed by Ishant Sharma and Umesh Yadav.