Wednesday, August 17, 2022

4th T20I: Iyer, Hooda to fight for Asia Cup berth as India look for series win

Shreyas Iyer’s performance will be under intense scrutiny as India gear up for the back-to-back T20I games against West Indies, starting here on Saturday, with the twin objective of winning the series and also firming up squad for T20 World Cup.
India are currently leading the five-match series 2-1 and nothing would be more satisfying than a couple of thumping wins in front of the USA’s Indian diaspora, which is anticipating an enjoyable weekend cricket carnival.
However in this current India set-up, if there is one man whose performance will be monitored more than anyone else, it has got to be Iyer.
Deepak Hooda, who has used most of the opportunities handed to him, looks good to outwit Iyer at the moment as far as the big ticket T20 World Cup berth is concerned.
With KL Rahul and Virat Kohli all set to be back in the playing eleven for the Asia Cup, time is certainly running out for the 27-year-old Mumbaikar, who has had scores of 0, 10 (11 balls) and 24 (27 balls) in the three games so far in the ongoing series.
He looked distinctly uncomfortable against the fast and rising deliveries.
While the short ball is his main problem, watching Iyer gives a feeling that he is unable to decide at what pace and which gear would he bat in a T20 game, something that’s not the case when he is taking strike in 50-over format.
In head coach Rahul Dravid’s regime so far, no player has got a raw deal in terms of chances and are given long enough rope to succeed.
However in case of Iyer, his T20I game hasn’t exactly yielded the results that one has seen him deliver in the ODI cricket.
Even then, Dravid has given Iyer nine T20I games in last two and half months, out of which, one in Bengaluru was a wash-out and there hasn’t been a single fifty-plus score even when he got chance to come out within first 10 overs.
If Iyer gets a go in the last two games, he has no option but to put his best foot forward as the Asia Cup team, in all probability, will also be the likely team for the T20 World Cup.
Even if Iyer makes the cut for Asia Cup or T20 World Cup, there is a miniscule chance of him getting a first XI look-in in a jam-packed top-order.

SourcePTI

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