IND v ENG 2021: "Kishan might not be part of XI; India may think of Tewatia for series decider," says Manjrekar

India and England play in the series deciding 5th T20I at Ahmedabad.

Ishan Kishan in the T20I series against England | Getty

Former Indian cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar has given all of us a surprise prediction for the final T20I between India and England, which will also be the series decider. According to him, Team India might hand a debut to Rahul Tewatia.

The 55-year-old is of the opinion that the team balance is not a concern for India at the moment. Although they might be a bit batting heavy, they are not likely to make a change in the number of bowlers for the fifth T20I, to be played on Saturday, March 20.

Manjrekar told ESPNCricInfo, "I think they (Team India) are okay (with the team balance) for the moment. You might think they are a bit batting heavy because very often they have not used all their batting because Washington Sundar is a batsman worth the salt in T20 cricket."

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"I don’t see India making any changes with regards to the number of bowlers. Maybe, they will have a look at Washington Sundar and the pitch being the way it is and if they bowl again in the second half of the game, they might think of somebody like a Tewatia," he added.

Manjrekar also ruled out the possibility of Akshar Patel getting a chance as there are a few left-handers in the England squad.

"They won’t play Akshar Patel as they have far too many left-handers in that England team. Also trying out Tewatia is a risk I doubt they will take," the former cricketer said.

He wants to see Ishan Kishan play in the virtual final against England if the niggle that kept him out of the fourth T20I is treated. However, Manjrekar feels that the Mumbai Indians (MI) batsman might not feature in the XI for Team India.

The 55-year-old said, "It gets a bit tricky now considering that this is a game both teams desperately want to win. I would love to have Ishan Kishan back if the niggle is out of the way but let’s see how it goes.

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I have a feeling Ishan Kishan may not play, which is unfortunate, and that niggle may have also helped the India team out because they want to keep backing KL Rahul."

"They want to give KL Rahul a long rope. He gets another game and they tell him that because you’re out of form and you’re a class player, you’ll get another game. But Rahul doesn’t get the license to consume more balls than necessary.

It’s good that his 14 off 17 balls didn’t come to hurt India but it hurt England for sure because that’s exactly what Malan got; 14 of 17 balls," Manjrekar stated.


By Sameer Deodhar - 20 Mar, 2021

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