NEW DELHI: Former Pakistan cricketer Kamran Akmal suggests that India's batting lineup could benefit from reinstating Virat Kohli to the number three spot, following his recent struggles at the top of the order.

In the ongoing T20 World Cup, India has restructured their T20I lineup, with Kohli and captain Rohit Sharma opening the innings, and Rishabh Pant promoted to number three.

Pant's elevation provides India with a balanced left and right-handed combination at the start. However, since Kohli's move to the opening slot, he has only managed to score five runs from eight deliveries across both matches.

Akmal argues that Kohli's return to the number three position could better stabilize India's batting order, suggesting that his current placement at the top disrupts the team's lineup. "You are ruining his confidence and your team's combination. I don't think we will see a player like Virat Kohli. He has made his name because of his passion and performance. I think the Indian team is making a mistake by making Virat open," Akmal said on his YouTube channel.

Against their arch-rival Pakistan in New York, Virat Kohli seemed poised for a lengthy stay at the crease after finding the fence with ease. However, Naseem Shah enticed him into playing a poor shot, resulting in his early dismissal.

Despite Kohli's early exit, India maintained a strong run rate of close to eight until the 11th over, appearing on track to set a competitive total of 160 runs. However, the dismissal of Suryakumar Yadav triggered a batting collapse from which the Indian team could not recover.

Kamran Akmal highlighted that poor shot selection significantly contributed to the collapse. "You can also see the shot selection of Rohit and then the way Virat, Hardik, Dubey and Surya lost their wickets. All of them played the wrong shots," Akmal added.

Even though India was bowled out for 119, a spirited effort from the bowlers, led by Jasprit Bumrah, ensured a narrow 6-run victory. India's bowlers displayed remarkable determination to defend the low total, ultimately securing the win.

Next up, India will take on the co-hosts USA at the Nassau County International Cricket Stadium in New York on Wednesday.

(Inputs from ANI)

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2024-06-10T12:38:14Z dg43tfdfdgfd