When the Indian selectors were about to the World Cup squad, there was a debate over only two positions. Eventually, Vijay Shankar and Dinesh Karthik got the nod as the number 4 batsman and the backup wicket-keeper respectively.
Chief selector MSK Prasad informed after the squad was picked that Shankar was given the green signal since he is a three-dimensional player who can contribute with the ball, bat and in the field. Also, it was informed that he is being seen as the choice for the number 4 position.
However, former England skipper Kevin Pietersen who is in India to cover the Indian Premier League as a pundit is not very convinced with the selection. Pietersen said that he had not seen enough of Vijay to warrant the number 4 slot in the World Cup side.
He also believed that batting at number 4, especially in England conditions, is a tough job.
“I haven’t seen enough of Vijay Shankar to warrant a No. 4 slot for India in the World Cup. I have seen some great players bat at No. 4 for India and sadly, Shankar seems far away from it. Batting at No. 4 is difficult and even more so in English conditions. It is almost like Shankar and Jadhav have made it to the India squad because they can bowl,” Pietersen said during the post-match analysis of the clash between Sunrisers Hyderabad and Chennai Super Kings on Star Sports.
Shankar himself said that he was now trying to keep things simple and be consistent in order to be in good frame of mind ahead of the marquee event.
“I was trying to keep it really simple. Even when the IPL started, there was talk about selection but I was just looking to be consistent,” Shankar said ahead of the IPL game between Sunrisers Hyderabad and Chennai Super Kings.