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Exclusive | Australia, New Zealand tours will decide if Ambati Rayudu can be India's No.4: Sourav Ganguly Read In Hindi

Ambati Rayudu impressed with his batting at No.4 but former India captain Sourav Ganguly said that he needs to score runs outside India to cement his place in the Indian side.

Written by: India TV Sports Desk, New Delhi [ Updated: January 15, 2019 12:21 IST ]
Image Source : GETTY IMAGES

Ambati Rayudu was out for 0 off 2 balls in the first ODI at Sydney

Former India captain Sourav Ganguly said that Ambati Rayudu's performances in these seven upcoming ODIs against Australia and New Zealand if he is the answer to India's questions at No.4 in the long term.

Rayudu, who on the back of a phenomenal Indian Premier League 2018 made a comeback into the Indian team, looked solid when playing in India and the Asia Cup in UAE but Ganguly feels that he has to score runs outside the sub-continent to cement his position.

According to Ganguly, the World Cup will be held in England and he has to show that he can score runs outside as well to play at No.4 for India.

"I'm not concerned about Shikhar Dhawan because he was in good form in T20s. But I'm concerned about Ambati Rayudu. He has scored runs in the sub-continent but India have to see if he can score runs outside the sub-continent because the World Cup is in England. He can't bat anywhere below No.4. 

"These games in Australia and New Zealand will be very important for him and will decide if he can be India's No.4 or not," Ganguly said IndiaTV's show Cricket Ki Baat when asked about his concerns regarding India's batting-order. 

"Im not convinced unless Rayudu can score. Virat has claimed earlier that he has claimed the No.4 spot but he has to score runs. It's imperative to allow Rayudu to play so that India can solve the No.4 spot dilemma," Ganguly  added . 

He also stressed on the fact that Mahendra Singh Dhoni can't come at No.4 because Rayudu has to bat there and Dhoni's slow show in Sydney doesn't concern him just yet.

"Dhoni's strike-rate has been like this for a while. Even in England he was batting like that. In the previous match the situation was different and he had to bat that way but after building an innings, you can't get out like that. 

"But, I'm not concerned about him after just after one match. These games in Australia and New Zealand will be very important," Ganguly said.

The 46-year-old also reiterated that India can win the three-match series despite being 1-0 down in the series as Virat Kohli's men have been in this situation many times before and they know what to do.

"India have been in this situation many times before and they have won after being 1-0 down. This situation is not different for India, so India can come back and win," Ganguly said.

However, he added that this Australian team has been impressive and can give India a run for their money.

"Peter Handscomb was in good form in the middle order and his importance in this batting line up is important. They also have good fast bowlers and I liked this team. 

"This Australia is better than the Test team and they are capable of winning and it will be a good contest," said the former captain.

Ganguly also dismissed any concerns regarding Kohli's form and said that he is big game player and will come good soon.

"Virat Kohli scored a century in Tests and after that he has been a little light (in terms of runs). But he can score a century in Adelaide and he can do so in the last match as well.

"In the last T20 also he scored runs, India needed it and he scored runs and he is a big match player. Big players shine and big matches and he can do it again," Ganguly said.

India trail 1-0 in the three-match series with the second game scheduled to be played at the Adelaide Oval on Tuesday.

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