He is our third opener: Rohit Sharma clears air on Virat Kohli’s batting position for T20 World Cup

With Kohli regaining his form while opening the innings, experts and fans have started suggesting that the star batter should bat alongside Rohit Sharma at the top of the order.

Ritesh PathakAuthor

Updated - 18 September 2022 04:06 PM

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Ever since Virat Kohli has returned from a long-due break and has been among the runs for India, the talks of him opening the innings for India at the T20 World Cup have been doing the rounds. These talks became more relevant when Kohli ended his century drought while opening the innings against Afghanistan at the Asia Cup 2022. The batter scored an impressive 122* off just 61 deliveries. 

With Kohli regaining his form while opening the innings, experts and fans have started suggesting that the star batter should bat alongside Rohit Sharma at the top of the order. However, a few like Gautam Gambhir also suggest that Kohli should continue to bat at his usual spot i.e. No.3. Now, India captain Rohit Sharma has cleared the air on Kohli’s batting position. 

Sharma revealed the plans the team management has for Virat Kohli. Rohit said that Kohli is their third opener. "Rahul (Dravid) bhai and I have had a chat that we will have to make Virat open in some of the games because he is our third opener. In the last match, we saw what he did (as opener) and we are obviously happy about that," PTI quoted Rohit saying.

However, the India captain made it clear that he and KL Rahul will continue to open the innings for India at the T20 World Cup. He also took a dig at Rahul’s critics and called the 30-year-old a match-winner. "KL Rahul will open for us at the T20 World Cup. We are not going to experiment with that position a lot. His performances often go noticed. He is a very important player for India.” 

"If you look at his performances over last two-three years, it has been very good. I want to make it clear to everyone that we have absolute clarity on this and kya khichdi pak rahi hain we know it very well. There is no confusion," said the skipper on a lighter note. 

But Sharma did not rule out the possibility of Kohli opening the innings in some of the games. "We are clear about what KL brings to the table for us. He is a match winner for us as well. We have not picked a backup opener and Virat can obviously open for us. He has done that well for his IPL franchise over the years," Rohit added.

Notably, India will play three T20Is against Australia and then they will host South Africa for three T20Is and as many ODIs before eventually taking part in the T20 World Cup. 

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