Prithvi Shaw’s India ODI debut confirmed, Virat Kohli to send him as opener against New Zealand

India will see a new player donning the blue-colour uniform on Wednesday (February 5, 2020) for the One-Day International (ODI) match against New Zealand. Confirming that 20-year-old Prithvi Shaw will become India’s 230th ODI player, captain Virat Kohli on Tuesday asserted that the stylish right-hander is “definitely going to start” against New Zealand.

India are without their star opening batsman Rohit Sharma whose New Zealand tour was cut short following a strain in the left calf, forcing the Board of Control for Cricket in India to name Shaw and Mayank Agarwal in the ODI team. Shaw has also been named in the India Test team for the two-match series against New Zealand.

Shaw will take Rohit’s role as an opener while KL Rahul who was given the responsibility in the T20 Internationals being sent back to his regular place in the middle order.

“We are looking to stick to the same plan. KL will bat in the middle order. We want him to get accustomed to that role and keep as well. We understand it’s an unfortunate situation that Rohit can’t be a part of this series. When you talk about One-Day cricket and T20 cricket, and Test cricket now, he’s one guy who’s always on the list first. The impact he’s had is there for everyone to see. But the thing is that we don’t have any One-Day tournaments to look forward to. It’s, if anything, an ideal time for him to go away and rectify this as soon as he can and come back,” stated Kohli on the eve of the first ODI against New Zealand in Hamilton.

“He played the T20I series, so from the team’s balance point of view heading into the World Cup year, it doesn’t really hamper the combination as far as the T20s are concerned. And in One-Day cricket, whoever steps in for him – Prithvi’s definitely going to start – and whoever the replacement – Agarwal – is, we’ll ask for an opener,” added Kohli.

Shaw, a native of Bihar, made his Test debut against the West Indies in October 2018 at Rajkot and scored a magnificent century (134). But his nascent career suffered a big blow when he injured his ankle ahead of India’s tour of Australia in 2018-19. He then served a ban for 8 months after testing positive for Terbutaline during a test by the BCCI.