England managed to abridge the flow of runs by the Indian batsmen in the second T20I besides halting their voyage of wins in seven consecutive games. Alex Hales made it by his cameo and the hosts succeeded to level the series and made the third match the decisive one to judge the winner of the series.
One of the best opening pairs in the World class cricket, Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan could not give India a good start. This is one of the longest opening stands for India. Rohit amassed great records in his ODI career and Shikhar Dhawan is one of the men with X-factor India had. They both had good IPL records as well. Rohit Sharma plays at No.4 for Mumbai Indians indeed. Let us have a glance at some of the best Indian players who can replace Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan at the need of the hour.
- Rishabh Pant
He proved himself as the best wicket-keeper and the batsman before he struck 20. He is one of the top performers for U19 team and for Ranji trophy in addition to Vijay Hazare Trophy. He did his best for Delhi Daredevils in the IPL. He is expected to don the wicket-keeping gloves if Dhoni needs to be replaced. His speedy and distant strokes are an eye feast to watch. His capability to play in any position of the batting line-up is an added asset.
- KL Rahul
IPL 2018 has broken the stereotypes imposed on Lokesh Rahul. He was earlier looked on as a test-specialist but his cameos in the Nidahas trophy and in the IPL earlier this year made the experts look for him as an opener for the team. He can play tremendous shots in his own conventional style. For Kings XI Punjab, he did his best with the bat along with Chris Gayle. He can give his best as an opener as well as a middle-order batsman. He fits perfect for the top-order like some elegant Indian batsmen like MS Dhoni, Suresh Raina, and Virat Kohli.
- Sanju Samson
This 23-year old batsman is one of the unsung heroes for the Indian team in the first class cricket. His versatility is utilized perfectly by the Rajasthan Royals this year in the IPL though he played for limited overs team just once in 2015. He represented Delhi Daredevils in the IPL earlier. If he can utilize his IPL experience properly, he can replace Dhoni just like Rishabh Pant.
- Virat Kohli
Undoubtedly, Virat Kohli is one of the versatile batsmen who can bat at any position in the line-up but he is looked on as a top-order batsman. He batted in opening position very rarely but his expertise is unquestionable. His performance for Royal Challengers Bangalore in the top order is an example for his elegant batting style. He can open the game if needed providing room for the likes of Dhoni and Suresh Raina to play with a good hand and Hardik Pandya following them.
- Ambati Rayudu
He is a fiery opener for Chennai Super Kings in the IPL and has the versatility to play in the middle order as well. He played for Mumbai Indians from 2010 to 2017. He played a very few games and he reached the mark of 30 years, getting famous for cameos as well as controversies. He is one of the best Powerplay batsmen who can utilize adversities as opportunities. He can be called to open the game for India in T20Is keeping his vast IPL experience in mind.