Gavaskar urges struggling Sehwag to revert to opening role
'The best move for him would be to go back to opening the batting. The new ball will come on to the bat; he can try and score off it.'
Former India captain Sunil Gavaskar has urged the struggling Virender Sehwag to revert to opening the batting in domestic cricket to regain form.
Since being dropped from the Indian squad last year, Sehwag has struggled with the bat for Delhi in the Ranji Trophy, scoring a meagre 234 runs in seven matches, at an average of 19, despite taking strike as opener and in the middle order.
"I think he is happy with the ball coming on to the bat. If you have opened the batting for such a long time it is a little bit difficult waiting in the dressing room, waiting for your turn to go to bat.
'Hundreds are not just to impress the selectors'
The best move for him would be to go back to opening the batting. The new ball will come on to the bat; he can try and score off it.
"The other thing is that clever captains will confront him with spin straightaway," said Gavaskar, at the Wankhede stadium in Mumbai, while doing commentary on the Ranji Trophy quarter-final between Mumbai and Maharashtra.
Gavaskar believes that Sehwag, who has played 104 Tests and 251 ODIs, still has it in him to make a comeback to international cricket.
"Nothing is impossible in cricket. It is up to these guys to come back with not just hundreds, but double hundreds and stuff like that. Hundreds are not just to impress the selectors, and consistently," he added.
'Yuvraj has to show that he has got the burning desire'
Another senior India player looking to catch the attention of the selectors is Yuvraj Singh, who got the axe after a poor run in the ODIs against Australia and in South Africa.
"You have one good season, one outstanding season, and you can comeback. It is up to Yuvraj to show that he has got the burning desire for it. I think he has! He has just had a bad season. Hopefully, he could comeback, because he adds so much to the Indian team, because he is still a top fielder and his spinners do help pick wickets," said Gavaskar.
The former opener commended the Indian team’s showing in the two-series against South Africa, which it lost 0-1.
"I was very happy with the way they did. They almost beat South Africa in the first Test and had another three good days at Durban. Maybe, a couple of bad sessions cost us the Test," he said.
'It is not going to be easy for India in New Zealand'
He went on to caution New Zealand against dishing out green tops for the Indians, who will be playing five One-Day Internationals, followed by two Tests, later this month.
"New Zealand again will be tough; playing in their conditions is never easy. All over the worked, the record shows that home teams are tough to beat. It is not going to be easy for India.
"They are going to leave grass on their pitches; that could work in India's advantage because of the new ball attack India has; it might work in their favour," he said, in obvious reference to Kiwi coach Mike Hesson appeal to the country’s curators to prepare green pitches for the Test series in February.
Gavaskar lauded batting sensation Virat Kohli, saying he is the future of India's batting.
"He has been outstanding; truly outstanding… the way he got a century and a near century. It is so nice to see him and Cheteshwar [Pujara] batting in the manner that they are. They are going to be the bulwarks of the Indian batting in future."