Former Indian great VVS Laxman has suggested that India can’t win the Test series in England if they are heavily reliant on just one or two batters. He also added that that the team management should back each and every batter to follow their own approach as that makes them special.
Despite India’s riches in the bowing department in the overseas conditions, the batting has remained a matter of grave concern. India’s defeat in the WTC final was also caused by a collapse in the batting line-up on the final day of the game. Even in India’s last Test series loss in England, the batters had fared terribly, with no one scoring as consistently as Virat Kohli.
And now as the Virat Kohli-led side brace up to face the big England challenge, their batting will again hog the limelight. Talking about India’s Achilles heel, former Indian batter VVS Laxman stated that India can’t win the five-match Test series in England if they are overly reliant on just one or two batters and marked it as an area of concern that they will need to address.
“One thing that Ravi Shastri and Virat Kohli need to address is – the match-winning performances from their batsmen. They overly depend on one or two batters in overseas conditions, especially in conditions like England. If you want to beat England in a five-Test series, then you want to have a collective performance from your batting unit. You can’t expect one or two batsmen to perform, and then you expect to win the series. And that is something that Ravi Shastri and Virat Kohli would like to address,” Laxman said on Star Sports show Game Plan, reported HT.
In recent times, Virat Kohli has turned inconsistent, while that has been the case for the experienced duo of Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane for a while now. When it comes to Rohit Sharma, despite looking solid, he’s yet to leave behind an impact in the overseas Tests since occupying the opener’s position. However, it’s been Pujara and his conservative approach that often turns into a talking point.
Laxman further explained that the team management needs to back the unique batting styles of different players and that’s when they will have the confidence to succeed.
“For me, Pujara, Rahane, all the batsmen in this Indian batting lineup are experienced and are quality. Everyone will have a different formula, and everyone will have a different approach to score runs. There is an approach that Virat Kohli has – which he has consistently maintained throughout his career – then there is an approach Pujara has shown, and Rahane has shown, or Rohit Sharma is showing as an opener. So, I think it is important for the team management to back each and every player to show confidence in their approach.”
Laxman, a veteran of 134 Tests, also termed India’s fast bowling formidable and reckons that the overall mindset of the team has changed.
“I believe the overall mindset of the Indian team has changed. With the win in Australia in 2020, the way they beat Australia in Brisbane and win the series in that fashion, in spite of a lot of first-choice players not being available, shows that there’s a lot of depth and character in this team. I think the fast-bowling unit has become very formidable, and they are high on confidence from the way they have performed all over the world.
India and England will lock horns in the Test series opener on July 4 in Nottingham.