Hayden Backs Rayudu; Says He Is India’s Perfect No. 4

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The Men in Blue are still in search for their No. 4 batsman for the upcoming World Cup. The search which began way back in 2017 hasn’t yet given any successful results. After many experimentation, the management decided to go with Ambati Rayudu.

However that decision is backfiring just days before the beginning of the mega-event. Rayudu returned to the team during the Asia Cup last year. Despite receiving the backing from the management Rayudu’s recent performance is woeful.

After a couple of decent performances in the series Down Under, everyone thought Rayudu will regain form. However in the recent concluded ODI series against Australia, he scored 13, 18 and 2.

He was dropped in the final two games which brought speculations that he might miss the World Cup spot. Meanwhile former Aussie opener Matthew Hayden is surprised to see India’s thoughts of replacing Rayudu. He supported Rayudu, especially for his brilliant 90 against the Kiwis in tough condition.

“Rayudu is my man. I can’t believe India is even questioning that. For so long, he has been so good. I don’t know why they are questioning, maybe because you need to speak about something before the World Cup. I don’t see Rahul taking that slot as much as I admire him. His time will come and if anything he is more of a stand-by opener for me as opposed to the number four slot,” Hayden was quoted as saying in The Times of India (TOI).

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Only one spot left to discuss

Meanwhile skipper Virat Kohli has hinted that India might try a new player at No. 4 in the World Cup. The mega tournament will begin from May 30 in England and Wales. Kohli can himself also play in that position. He said that the playing eleven is almost sorted except for one position.

“As a side, combination wise, we are pretty sorted. Maximum one change, you’ll get to see in the World Cup. As a side, we’re balanced. Hardik Pandya will come back to the team. With him, there’s batting depth, and bowling option opens up. We know where we have to go as a combination. The XI is clear in our head. We just have to take better decisions in pressure situations to go far in the World Cup,” Kohli said after the fifth ODI.