Former India batsman Dilip Vengsarkar called for Rahul Dravid to be ‘rushed’ to Australia to help the struggling Indian batsmen after they were bowled out for just 36 in the second innings of the first Test in Adelaide, their lowest ever score in Tests.
Vengsarkar said it’s time for Dravid to be involved with the senior team which has consistently struggled to cope with foreign conditions.
“The BCCI must rush Dravid to Australia to help the team. No one can guide the batsmen better on how to play the moving ball in those conditions. His presence will be a huge boost to the Indian team in the nets. In any case, the NCA has been shut due to Covid for the past nine months, leaving him with little to do," Vengskarkar told Times of India.
“The Board can make a better use of Dravid by utilising his services to help the national team, which will be without skipper Virat Kohli from now (last three Tests).
“Even if he has to serve a mandatory two-week quarantine period, he should be available for helping the Indian team at the nets before the third Test in Sydney, which will begin from January 7.
“It is time that Dravid is asked to be involved with the Indian team more."
Dravid, the head of the National Cricket Academy in Bangalore, was previously coach of the India Under-19 teams that finished runner-up in 2016 and winner in 2018. A technically correct batsman, Dravid is credited for his work with the India A set up as well.
India already have a batting coach in Vikram Rathour and a head coach in Ravi Shastri.
The batting line up faces a stiff challenge with captain Kohli returning to India for the birth of his first child.
It’s reported that Prithivi Shaw and Wriddhiman Saha could also face the axe. While it looks almost certain that KL Rahul will come in place of Kohli, his batting order doesn’t seem certain. If the latter bats in the middle-order, then the likes of Ajinkya Rahane and Hanuma Vihari could be promoted. Also, the management could also get rid of Vihari, and get in Shubman Gill as an opener.
Meanwhile, Cricket Australia on Sunday stated that the third Test of the ongoing four-match series between Australia and India remains on track to be played in Sydney for now despite a fresh Covid-19 cluster in the city. The third Test is scheduled to be played at the Sydney Cricket Ground from January 7-11. However, a report in The Sydney Morning Herald stated that CA is mulling over the idea of taking the third Test to Brisbane and switching the fourth match to Sydney.
The second Test will begin on December 26 in Melbourne.