With the conditions likely to aid spinners, India would miss the presence of Shreyas Iyer at No.5, with the right-hander’s approach against the spinners being one of the best in the country. Replacing Iyer is a task of its own but in Suryakumar Yadav and Shubman Gill – India have two great choices who can walk in as natural replacement.
However, former Indian head coach, Ravi Shastri backs Suryakumar Yadav to come good at No.5 for India, in the first Test at the VCA Stadium in Nagpur. Shastri reckons that Suryakumar’s natural game against spin, where he proactively takes the attack to the bowlers will be influential.
“Suryakumar Yadav might get the opportunity in that Test match. And he’s going to play his natural game. I think he’s one player who will be proactive. Especially with Nathan Lyon or the other spinners, he will be looking to score all the time, looking to rotate the strike,” said Shastri in a chat with Star Sports.
One of the many attributes of Iyer’s influence on this Indian team has been his ability to rotate strike, and get busy during the middle-overs.
“If you want to do well in India, you have got to rotate the strike. You can’t have bowlers bowling maidens at you. You have got to find a way where you want to score, not think of just blocking, because that can create real problems for you. So, I think he will be very useful in that position,” Shastri added.
Coming into the series against Australia, one of the crucial aspects for both the teams would be how the middle-order functions with the bat. And Shastri insisted that Suryakumar’s influence, even if it is a 30-40 would decide the fate of a game.
“He might come and play a little cameo on a track that is spinning a lot, where a 30 or 40 could decide the fate of a game. And he can get it quickly and disrupt the opposition. So India will be thinking in that fashion there,” said Shastri.