Sunil Gavaskar backs dual wicketkeeper strategy with K.L Rahul and Ishan Kishan for World Cup and Asia Cup

Cricket legend Sunil Gavaskar supports the inclusion of both K.L Rahul and Ishan Kishan in the playing XI for the upcoming ODI World Cup and suggests they may compete for middle-order positions during the Asia Cup.

Ishan Kishan and K.L. Rahul were both chosen for the 15-man team for the ODI World Cup, and Sunil Gavaskar, a former captain of India, has backed their inclusion in the playing XI. Gavaskar predicts a glut of players in the middle order, where K.L. Rahul and Shreyas Iyer may compete for a spot in the finals.

“It could be a fight between K.L Rahul and Shreyas Iyer in the Super Fours in the Asia Cup. With the kind of form that Ishan Kishan showcased against Pakistan, if both of them play, it might be a good idea to let Ishan keep wickets because if Rahul has undergone recovery from an injury, then getting up and down might be a bit of an issue. It makes sense to have Ishan to keep wickets. It could actually be a fight between Shreyas Iyer and KL Rahul for the No. 4 and No. 5 positions,” Sunil Gavaskar said on Tuesday.

After putting forth a strong effort against Pakistan in India’s Asia Cup opener on Saturday, where his inning of 82 runs in 81 balls came in handy after the loss of early wickets, Kishan’s performance on the West Indies tour last month qualified him for the World Cup.


Despite K.L. Rahul’s injury issues, the club management seems to be backing the wicketkeeper-batter. He hasn’t had his cricket fitness evaluated, but he might be physically fit. It could be challenging to run between the wickets and put up with the demands of fieldwork.

Rahul has, however, demonstrated consistency in the past, according to Gavaskar, who acknowledged Rahul’s prior performance.

“He is a proven performer with the bat and when you have been a proven performer, you get a bit of leeway. That’s exactly what has happened in this instance. It can be a bit of a worry that he hasn’t played any cricket. Now, you are flying him to Sri Lanka, he will be able to play a few matches and then you see his fitness,” said Gavaskar.

“You have three ODIs against Australia in the third week of September. You can still have a replacement in the World Cup. There is a technical committee of the ICC that will assess the injury and decide whether there can be a replacement or not. I don’t think there should be a problem with that,” he added.


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