Sunil Gavaskar said Shubman Gill is struggling and suggested a new opening pair for KKR in IPL 2021
Sunil Gavaskar said Shubman Gill is struggling and suggested a new opening pair for KKR in IPL 2021

'Shubman Gill is struggling': Sunil Gavaskar suggests an entirely new opening pair for KKR in IPL 2021

  • Stating that Shubman Gill is struggling and Nitish Rana better suited at No.3, legendary India cricketer Sunil Gavaskar suggested a new pair for the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in IPL 2021.
UPDATED ON APR 27, 2021 03:46 PM IST

Seeing the Kolkata Knight Riders opening combination of Nitish Rana and Shubman Gill failing to provide KKR a good start in IPL 2021, legendary India cricketer Sunil Gavaskar suggested a new opening pair for the Eoin Morgan-led side going ahead in the Indian Premier League. Gavaskar said there is a case for Rahul Tripathi to open with Sunil Narine.

Rana and Gill have opened for KKR in the 6 matches that they have played this season but have failed to put together a significant partnership at the top. While Rana has been amongst the runs especially at the start of the tournament, Gill has been struggling big time. The talented right-hander has a highest score of 33 and has not been able to hit the boundaries in the powerplay which has hurt KKR a great deal.

Also Read | 'Undue pressure on Gayle, Pooran': Ex-Ind cricketers slam PBKS' batting approach

Rahul Tripathi, on the other hand, has been the most consistent KKR batsman this season. Gavaskar said Rana has found success for KKR over the years while batting at No.3 and Tripathi made a name for himself in the IPL as an opener so KKR could think of swapping their positions.

“Nitish Rana, in the years that he has been very successful for KKR, he has been batting at No.3. So, if Rahul Tripathi can open the batting, which he used to do earlier on for the other franchises, maybe that’s the way to go for him,” Gavaskar told Star Sports after KKR returned to winning ways after four straight losses by beating PBKS by 5 wickets in Ahmedabad.

Gavaskar said Narine, who has been floating in the middle order can be asked to open with Tripathi.

“I think KKR have to make up their minds whether Sunil Narine opens the batting with Shubman Gill or Rahul Tripathi opens the batting. With Shubman Gill also – struggling and not quite there; maybe there is a case for Tripathi to open with Sunil Narine,” added Gavaskar.

What augurs well for KKR is return to form of captain Eoin Morgan. The left-hander scored an unbeaten 47 off 40 balls to help KKR reach the 124-run target inside 17 overs.

Gavaskar said Morgan will be pleased with the win and also rejoiced at the fact that he was back amongst runs.

“He was playing his shot well. He was being aggressive, which is his normal game. When you contribute towards teams win and steady the ship – because at one stage they were 3 wickets down and they needed that partnership between him and Rahul Tripathi – that steadied the ship and eventually to take your team home. That gives you a lot of confidence for the matches to come. I think, Morgan will be very pleased with the win and the way he contributed to that win,” said Gavaskar.

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