Former India player turned veteran commentator Aakash Chopra wants Shreyas Iyer to replace Virat Kohli in India’s playing XI for their Asia Cup 2023 Super Four clash against Bangladesh if he is fit and available. However, the two sides will play against each other at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo on Friday, September 15. Shreyas, who missed India’s last two matches against Pakistan and Sri Lanka due to back spasms, practised in the nets on Thursday. However, there is no clarity on whether he has recovered well to play in a 50-over game.
In a video shared on his YouTube channel, Chopra said: “I feel Shreyas Iyer should be played if he is fit. To be fair, he is practicing a lot. He has practiced the most, he is really sweating it out. I am pretty sure that he has recovered from back spasms if he is practicing. If he has recovered, he needs to play. However, if he plays, who should he play instead of is the big question you and I need to answer. Some people might get angry, but I believe you shouldn’t say anything to the small kids in the house. You should ask them to play because the elders are experienced and will adjust later.”
However, Shubman Gill and Ishan Kishan were the only two relatively inexperienced players in India’s playing XI against Pakistan and Sri Lanka and the team management could consider dropping either of them and opening with the other as well. And, Aakash Chopra wants Virat Kohli to be given a break to give a chance to Shreyas Iyer in the XI.
“The elders have already shown their form. I am talking about Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli. So if I have to play Shreyas Iyer, and I do feel he should be played, I will ask Virat to take rest, although he hasn’t played much cricket in the entire August. I could have asked Rohit to take rest, but the captain has to play. When Virat was the captain, Virat would not miss a single game. Rohit will have to do that now. He will have to play in a dead rubber as well,” Aakash Chopra concluded.