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“Shubman is the ideal candidate to come in at No. 3” – Saba Karim
By SMCS - Jan 11, 2024 1:00 pm
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The former India wicketkeeper-batter Saba Karim shared that talented India batter Shubman Gill is ideally suited to take Virat Kohli’s place at No. 3 in the first T20I between India and Afghanistan as well. The Indian team will take on Afghanistan in a three-match T20I series, with the first game taking place in Mohali on Thursday, January 11. Kohli has opted out of the game for personal reasons as well.

Shubman Gill
Shubman Gill was dismissed after a brilliant catch

During a discussion on Sports 18, Karim said: “At No. 3, you have to come to bat in the powerplay at times and sometimes after the powerplay, but your aim, in the end, should be to play big shots and accelerate as soon as you go in. I feel Shubman is capable of batting at No. 3.”

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He further added: “In today’s era, I feel Rahul Dravid’s thinking will also be to develop young players who are multi-dimensional and multi-faceted, and have the flexibility to bat at any number. So I feel Shubman is the ideal candidate to come in at No. 3 although he knows that he will get a limited number of chances.”

Shubman Gill
Shubman Gill will be expected to miss a crucial game

However, Saba Karim also stated that Gill hasn’t been in great form across formats over the last few months. He also urged the youngster to make it count if he gets to play at No. 3. Meanwhile, Pragyan Ojha also stated that Virat Kohli’s absence will probably help Shubman Gill to get a place in the XI, which he might not have got otherwise as Yashasvi Jaiswal is likely to open with Rohit Sharma.

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“When you are playing for India, the most important thing is for you to get a chance. If Virat had played here, Shubman Gill might not have played because we know that Yashasvi is getting an opportunity. I feel there isn’t too much difference between an opener and No. 3. The fearless way in which he plays, the strike rate we always talk about, he has taken that route. I feel it’s a God-given chance because this is the only T20 series before the World Cup,” he concluded.