AUS v IND: I see no issue with the concussion replacement - Kumble
The former India spinner says Yuzvendra Chahal was a suitable replacement for the concussed Ravindra Jadeja in the first T20I.
Anil Kumble...“Jadeja had done his part of the batting. So you look at the other skills he brings in. He is a spinner. That’s why a spinner (Chahal) was brought in as like for like replacement.” - K. MURALI KUMAR
Former India spinner Anil Kumble sees no issue with the concussion replacement India opted for when Ravindra Jadeja was ruled out of the first T20I at the conclusion of India’s innings due to concussion.
Yuzvendra Chahal, a leg-spinner, was chosen to replace Jadeja and he helped India beat Australia by 11 runs, taking three wickets for 25 runs in his four-over spell. Moises Henriques, at the post-match press conference, questioned whether Chahal was a “like-for-like” concussion substitute for Jadeja.
“Whenever he got hit [on the head], I don’t think it has got anything to do with replacement,” Kumble said at the launch of 'The Hitman: The Rohit Sharma Story', a biography of Rohit Sharma, in Bengaluru on Saturday.
“Some reports suggested that Jadeja is an all-rounder and they should have played an all-rounder. But then Jadeja had done his part of the batting. So you look at the other skills he brings in. He is a spinner. That’s why a spinner (Chahal) was brought in as like for like replacement.
“If the roles were to be replaced, for example if he was concussed when on the field when India was bowling and if Jadeja had to bat and couldn’t bat then I am sure Chahal wouldn’t have been like-for-like replacement. You would have looked at some batsman to come in place of Jadeja. I am sure Chahal would have been listed in the 15. I don’t see any issue with the concussion replacement,” Kumble explained.
Former India batsman V.V.S. Laxman, who had a good record against Australia, highlighted Rohit's talent and why he should have been the batting mainstay, even in Tests. "He can put pressure on the bowlers once he gets his eye in. But he has been bogged by injuries. He is talented enough to succeed as a Test mach player. The first time I saw him was in 2005 in KSCA tournament. He had lot of time against the fast bowlers but struggling against the spinners. A year later I saw him so improved and he was clearing the boundary with such ease at No 6, change the momentum of the game. I knew he had the ability to do something special. We struggle to get a double hundred in Test cricket and he has done it three times in One Day cricket. How he hits the sixes. Not just power. He does it with sheer timing. The way he plays the short pitched delivery, the way he picks the length of the ball. Very gifted player. Delight to watch," he said.
Kumble agreed with Laxman and recalled the early days of the star India opener.
"I have seen him bat brilliantly at No 5 and No 6. I believe he has lot of cricket tomiffer in Test matches. He has so much time to play the ball, can play off the bat and pull and hook the ball by timing it. The margin of error when you bowl to him is very minimal. Can’t be full, can’t be short."
Rohit 'the captain'
The stalwarts were all praise for Rohit's captaincy acumen. "Extremely confident when we gave him the captaincy offer at Mumbai Indians. It came naturally to him. He was ready for the challenge. Good we are discussing that we have the option of a second guy. We are lucky we have Rohit who has been successful (in the IPL). When the time comes and the need I am sure he will be ready," said Kumble.
Laxman feels Virat Kohli is doing a fantastic job as a captain and a change is not necessary though Rohit is a proven leader. "No dolubt he is a wonderful captain. Whenever he led in Virat’s absence he has been successful. Leading a franchise to five titles is not easy. The way he has built the team and handles tough situations has been superb. He has all the qualities to be a successful captain for India but you don’t have to necessarily look for a change."