T20 World Cup 2021: Not Virat Kohli, all eyes will be on THIS player during India-New Zealand Super 12 clash

DUBAI: As Team India prepares itself for the upcoming Super 12 clash with New Zealand, all eyes will be on one man who is regarded as one of the most explosive batsmen in white-ball cricket.

Yes, we are talking about ‘hitman’ Rohit Sharma – the explosive India opener who failed to shine with the bat during the India-Pakistan clash on Sunday last week in Dubai.

Rohit is the second-highest run-getter in T20Is, behind skipper Virat Kohli. While skipper Virat Kohli is in superb form, Sharma’s poor record against New Zealand has been a major concern for his side.

Going by his past records, New Zealand are one of the sides against whom Rohit has often struggled in the shortest format. Sharma has also been dismissed in single digits six times against the Kiwis in pas ten innings. He has had a poor strike rate against New Zealand.

But despite all this, Rohit Sharma is currently among the world’s leading run-scorers and has an impressive record against most of the teams during major tournaments. 

However, it remains to be seen whether Sharma will prove his critics wrong and be able to give a solid start when India lock horns with New Zealand.

Team India has already begun their preparation for the New Zealand game with a “fun” fielding session on Wednesday. The official Twitter handle of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) shared a few pictures from the session.

Amid all this, veteran spinner Harbhajan Singh has given some advice for Team India ahead of their tie against New Zealand. Bhajji, who was part of India’s 2007 T20 World Cup and 2011 ODI World Cup-winning squads, has recommended some changes in Team India, saying it needs to make minor adjustments if they were to win against the Kiwis.

Bhajji has suggested a change in the opening pair of Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul and pitched for Ishan Kishan. The veteran spinner has said that Kishan should be given a chance in the opening slot along with Rohit, considering his rich form in recent outings. 

Talking on his Youtube channel, Harbhajan said, “I feel it’s important for Ishan Kishan to play. If Ishan Kishan opens with Rohit Sharma, India can get the start they are looking for. If he plays six overs, the score won’t be 40-45 but can be 60-66 because Kishan is an explosive batsman. If he is on crease every bowler will be under pressure.” 



The off-spinner asked for KL Rahul to drop down to the middle order and bat at number four while leaving Suryakumar Yadav out of his playing XI. “I will have Virat Kohli at 3, KL Rahul at 4. This will make India’s top 4 very solid and Rishabh Pant should bat at 5.”

With Pakistan’s victory over both India and New Zealand, the meeting between the two sides on Sunday is a must-win clash for both sides in their hopes of making the semi-final.

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Sagar Biswas

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