- Virat scored unbeaten 162 against Afgnisthan as he came out to open in the Asia Cup
- India will likely use Virat as a back-up option in the opening slot for the T20 World Cup
- India play Australia on Tuesday it the first of three T20I matches
Former Australian opener Matthew Hayden has backed Virat Kohli to bat at No 3 as he suggests it is his best position. According to Hayden, Virat is not suitable for the opener's role as Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul should continue opening for Team India.
"And this great debate around Virat batting up, GG (Gambhir) and I have already had this over the last couple of days, there's no way that he has to open the batting, he has to bat at number 3, simple as that.
"And again, it's another one of those things that you don't want to let the door open the discussion on this," Hayden said while he was speaking to Starsports.
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Adding to his previous comment, Hayden further stated that players should be allowed to play their natural game in the World Cup. He thinks Virat can handle the situation well and that the rest of the batting unit will do its job.
"The one thing that you want to alleviate in the World Cup is the pressure. Just let the batting order rely on its own form and Virat Kohli can handle the situation. He's a world class player, he can bat at three and he should bat at three in my opinion," Hayden further stated.
At 33, Virat still has a lot of Cricket left in him and recently returned to form after scoring a ton against Afghanistan in the Asia Cup 2022. Interestingly, Virat came out to bat at the opening position after Rohit Sharma was rested for the dead-rubber clash.
The debate has since sparked volumes as former players have voiced their opinion on Virat's batting position. Rohit Sharma too has backed the idea of playing Virat at the opener's position.
Virat will next take guards in the T20I series against Australia which starts on Tuesday in Mohali.
A fully-fledged Indian side will take guards against the Aussies under the leadership of Rohit Sharma. Hayden on the flip side will be seen working with the Pakistan Cricket team as a batting mentor for the upcoming T20 World Cup.