Former Australia player Brad Hogg is not in favour of playing the all-rounder Hardik Pandya at No. 6 only as a pure batsman. Hogg further believed that rather than playing Pandya at No.6 as a pure batsman, India should promote Ravindra Jadeja to his spot and play all-rounder Shardul Thakur at No.7 as well. He again shared his concern over Bhuvneshwar Kumar’s recent form as well.
While speaking on his YouTube channel, Hogg said: “I’m a little worried about Bhuvneshwar coming into the tournament with the amount of cricket that he has played and if it is not swinging, how is he going to counteract that. Final concern is Hardik Pandya coming in at No.6. If he can’t bowl, they should not play him. They should have Jadeja at No.6 and Thakur at No.7.”
Brad Hogg also stated that after the fixed positions of the top three batsmen in the batting unit, wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant can bat at No.4. Moreover, he did not get a chance to bat at length during the warm-up games as well.
Brad Hogg again shared: “Their strengths are obviously their top 4 in Rohit, Rahul, Kohli and Pant’s going to bat at No.4. Pant is a big one. Yes, he is a constructive player, but also in the IPL, he has shown that he can play a little conservatively when the team is on the back foot and get the momentum back.”
However, Team India will open their tournament against their arch-rivals Pakistan on Sunday (October 24) in Dubai. Meanwhile, Hogg applauded Pakistan’s potent and versatile bowling attack but he also expressed his concern over their middle order as well.
Hogg also noted that Pakistan has a tough fixture as they will take on India, New Zealand and Afghanistan in a row across different venues. He also feels that if they manage to defeat India in their opening game, they will make it to the semi-finals of the tournament as well.
“Their strengths are their opening batsman in Rizwan and Babar Azam. Their bowling is very strong, perhaps the best bowling lineup going into the tournament. They have good balance in their pace department. No.3 and 4 is a concern, will Fakhar Zaman be able to deliver at No. 3 and deliver, that’s a big question. Paksitan should play Haider Ali at No.4 and allow him to play with freedom,” Brad Hogg concluded.