Former English captain, Kevin Pietersen adjured the captain of Team India, Virat Kohli, and their head coach, Ravi Shastri to play the under pressure all-rounder, Vijay Shakar in their upcoming match against England at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019.
Kevin Pietersen wrote in Tweet to Virat Kohli and Ravi Shastri, “Dear Virat & Ravi – please don’t drop Vijay Shankar. I think he’s coming into his own and would potentially win you tomorrow’s game.”
Kevin Pietersen also suggested that the Indian team should not think about the just arrived Rishabh Pant and should continue playing Vijay Shankar. He further continued, “Don’t think about Pant. He needs another 3 weeks prep before I think he can get into your World Cup side.”
Vijay Shankar is currently batting at no. 4 for the ‘Men in Blue’. The All-rounder was selected for the playing XI after Shikhar Dhawan was ruled out of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 due to a fracture in his thumb. Vijay Shankar was brought in a high-voltage match of India vs Pakistan on June 16. He didn’t get much time on the crease as he scored 15 runs in as many balls, finishing the innings for his team. He also took 2 crucial wickets.
Vijay Shankar then failed to capitalize on his opportunities as he managed to score 29 against Afghanistan and 14 against West Indies. After the departure of Shikhar Dhawan, the No. 4 position again becomes a problem for the ‘Men in Blue’.
There are talks about bringing in Rishabh Pant or Dinesh Karthik in place of Vijay Shankar against England on Sunday. However, Kevin Pietersen feels that India should still give a chance to the all-rounder on Sunday.
India will face England in their 7th match of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 at Birmingham on June 30. While India will aim to secure their spot at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 semifinals, on the other hand, England will play their must win game to stay in the race of the semifinals.