Virat Kohli has returned to the opening partnership of KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma for the game against Afghanistan, further demonstrating India’s lack of set opening combination. After experimenting with Ishan Kishan last game, Virat Kohli dropped for the next game, with Rohit Sharma returning to the top of the order. The move saw KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma put on a 50-run partnership in the powerplay, India’s best start in the T20 World Cup.
Team India have tried six opening combinations over the past year, before returning to their set pair of KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma. Before the game against Afghanistan, India have panicked and chopped and changed their opening combination far too many times signalling captain Virat Kohli’s confusion during team selections. Ishan Kishan was dropped after just one game, with the Indian captain showing a lack of faith after just one failure as he tried to set things right in the T20 World Cup.
— BCCI (@BCCI) November 3, 2021
Fortunately for Kohli, KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma have answered his call for a better start to the innings, notching up a stunning 50 partnership. The duo took the attack to the opposition in the powerplay giving India their best start of the T20 World Cup, staying unbeaten throughout the first six overs.
While the rest of the teams have stuck with the openers, India have struggled partly due to Virat Kohli and the team management panicking and not giving players enough chances to make their mark. Pakistan, who became the first team to qualify for the knockouts, backed Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan to the hilt, and the duo have responded with more than 1000 runs in a calendar year partnerships, including an unbeaten 152 run stand in the win against India. England have also stuck with Jos Buttler and Jason Roy at the top of their order, and have reaped rewards for the same.