Mumbai: Former captain Sourav Ganguly on Monday said India have a lot of options for the No 4 position in their ODI side, and stressed that one position alone will not win important tournaments like the World Cup.
Ganguly said the team management should zero in on one player and give him a long rope at the No 4 slot.
“India has enormous talent. I keep hearing about this…we don’t have this or that but we have too much and that is the problem that we cannot decide.
“The No 4…Rahul (Dravid), selectors and Rohit (Sharma) need to decide that ‘this is my No 4 and I will continue with him’. One batting slot does not make much of a difference,” Ganguly told the media here while being appointed as the brand ambassador of the real estate company Casagrand.
Downplaying the debate over the No 4 position, Ganguly said any player can be fitted there.
“Number four is just a number and anybody can fit in. I started in the middle-order in one-day cricket and went on to open because I was asked to by Sachin (Tendulkar) as captain. It is the same with Sachin.
He batted at six and his captain asked him to open and he became a world-class player. Anybody can play at No 4. There’s Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer and KL Rahul,” said Ganguly.
Promising left-hander Tilak Varma, who impressed all during the T20I series against West Indies recently, on Monday was included in India’s squad for the Asia Cup 2023.
It was his maiden entry into India’s ODI set-up. Ganguly hoped that the young batsman will make the opportunity count with big runs.
“He is good but I think when you play big tournaments, you need a bit more runs under the belt,” he said.
Ganguly opined that wrist spinners will be crucial for India in the coming tournaments.
“We have a very good bowling attack… (Jasprit) Bumrah, (Mohammed) Siraj, (Mohammed) Shami, (Ravindra) Jadeja will play the all-rounder’s role and then you have the wrist spinners.
“I will always pick (Yuzvendra) Chahal, I will always pick wrist spinners. I do not know what the selectors think but I will always pick wrist spinners,” he said.
However, Chahal was not picked in India’s Asia Cup squad but left-arm wrist spinner Kuldeep Yadav found a place in the Sri Lanka-bound unit.
Ganguly backed India to come good in the Asia Cup and in the subsequent World Cup.
“It’s a solid team, I keep saying that, (but) I keep hearing “yaar solid solid bolte ho, World Cup jeet ta hi nahi hai, aise thodi World Cup har samay jeetega yaar. (you say it is a solid team but does not win the World Cup. You cannot win the World Cup every time),” he said.
Ganguly said India will enter the semifinals of the World Cup and urged everyone to give the side a bit of time to find the mojo.
“I am sure they will at least get to the semifinals (of WC). They entered the Test championship final, which itself is an achievement. Once they get there, they’ll cross the bridge.
So, I have a lot of time for this team, a lot of faith in this team and hopefully from the Asia Cup we will see a side which will go all the way (against) Australia and then the World Cup,” he added.