Former India pacer Ajit Agarkar feels that 21-year-old Shubman Gill should come to bat at No.6 as Ajinkya Rahane, Hanuma Vihar and Cheteshwar Pujara will keep their places in the upper-middle-order in the upcoming Test series against Australia.
As long as India’s Test Squad is concerned, they have plenty of specialist openers in the form of KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal, Shubman Gill and Prithvi Shaw. Rohit Sharma is also set to join the squad soon.
However, with Virat Kohli returning back after 1st Test, Rahane is expected to take his position at No. 4 and Vihari to fill the spot behind him. This means India doesn’t have anyone for the crucial No. 6 position.
“Everyone seems to be an opener at the moment in this squad, isn’t it? Because Vihari and Rahane are obviously going to be playing in the middle order with Pujara. So those are three spots that you would believe are occupied. My pick would be Shubman Gill [at 6]. I think a lot of people have picked him as an opener,” Ajit Agarkar said on the Sony Sports Network.
Shubman Gill’s Records as an Opener
Shubman Gill is an experienced opener. In 22 First-Class matches, Gill has mostly played as a designated opener. He boasts an average of 69.74 with seven centuries and ten fifties.
He is currently playing the twin warm-up games in Australia before the Tests begin on December 17. In three innings, Gill has recorded scores of 29, 43 and 65 – the highest among the openers.
Agarkar accepted that Gill has found success in Ranji cricket while opening the innings for Punjab but added that he is better suited in the lower middle-order.
“Yes, he opened in First-Class cricket for a season or a little bit more has a good record. But I still feel that his best position might be somewhere in the middle. at least in Test cricket, because I don’t see any better options at this point. People could point put to KL Rahul and his white-ball form but if I had to pick, I’ll go with Shubman Gill,” Agarkar added.