Abu Dhabi [UAE], November 2 (ANI): India batting coach Vikram Rathour on Tuesday said that the decision to open with Ishan Kishan in place of Rohit Sharma for the match against New Zealand made sense tactically and it was the entire team management that took the call.
It will be a change in venue for India after playing both their opening games at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium as they will play Afghanistan at the Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi.
"How things went was that Suryakumar Yadav was having back spasms the previous night so he was ruled out of the game against New Zealand. The person coming in was Ishan and he has done well as an opener. The whole management took the call and Rohit is part of that group. He was part of that discussion, having Ishan as an opener tactically made sense. We did not want many left-handers in the late middle-order," said Rathour during a virtual press conference.
Replying to an ANI query about the lack of competition for the finisher slot, the batting coach said: "We have Jadeja in the team as well who I think is a fabulous finisher. Players like Suryakumar Yadav, players like Virat have done well for us in the past. We have enough players who can do the job, I do not see any issue. When you pick the team for World Cup, you have a slight restriction where you can pick just 15. That's the way it is. I think we have enough in our batting, we have just not been able to execute our plans."
When asked about whether IPL was good practice for the ongoing tournament, Rathour said: "Any preparation is good preparation. IPL does provide you with a platform where you compete against the top cricketers in the world. So yes, it was a good platform to practice. I do not see any issue with this. Players got loads of games, what happened in the past two games was that we were not able to execute our plans the way we wanted to and that has been our issue."
Talking about the bowling scheme of things, Rathour said: "Few factors involved. Execution can be better, secondly, the wicket definitely eases up when you are bowling second and thirdly, we did not put up enough runs on the board to create that pressure. Once you are defending just 110, it gets easier for the team batting second. We are having lots of planning where bowlers are involved, our execution can be better."
"Ofcourse, Afghanistan is a good team, they have done well. I think the challenge would be their spinners. If we can bat to our potential, as I said we have skillful players. If we play to our potential, we will do well," he added.
Having faced the wrath of the fans as well for below-par performances so far, it will also be about pride for Kohli's men as they play under his leadership in the T20 format for the last time in this tournament. (ANI)