Former India player turned veteran commentator Aakash Chopra feels India youngster Ruturaj Gaikwad should be in the selectors’ mind for the upcoming ODI series against South Africa. India are scheduled to play three ODIs against the Proteas.
Gaikwad has been in sublime form, with 603 runs to his name and he is also the leading run-scorer in the ongoing Vijay Hazare Trophy. However, Maharashtra couldn’t make it to the knockout stages and he couldn’t add to his run tally.
In a video shared on his YouTube channel, Aakash Chopra opened up on Ruturaj Gaikwad’s performance. He said:
“The first name, the name at the top is Ruturaj Gaikwad. I mean he has hit four centuries, at one point he had hit three hundreds in three matches and no one was able to get him out. I saw some of his innings. It seemed like he was playing against kids.”
We're at the end of the Vijay Hazare Trophy's group stage. There have been some stellar performances from the likes of Ruturaj Gaikwad and Venkatesh Iyer. We have some key updates from the tournament for you on this episode of Betway Cricket Chaupaal:https://t.co/EtHkD4Iht1 pic.twitter.com/8aRqQ5xLaa
— Aakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) December 18, 2021
Aakash Chopra went on to add:
“He was only playing the sweep shots against the fast bowlers, who does that? Inside out fours against the spinners. Bowlers were bowling alright but Ruturaj actually looked in a different league altogether.”
Ruturaj Gaikwad’s 603 runs came at a stunning strike rate of 112.92. He smashed 51 fours and 19 sixes during the league phase of the tournament as well.
And, the veteran stated that Ruturaj Gaikwad has done enough to be part of the Indian team as well. Aakash Chopra observed:
“He made 603 runs at an average of 150 and a strike rate of nearly 113. There are four centuries in that, the recent scores are 168, 21, 124, 154* and 136. It actually felt that the guy is ready for the Indian team.”
“It’s absolutely impossible that his name will not be discussed” – Aakash Chopra on Ruturaj Gaikwad
The veteran again shared that Ruturaj Gaikwad will certainly be on the selectors’ radar as well. He has so far played for two T20Is against Sri Lanka in July this year but is yet to make his debut in ODIs.
“Of course, whether you select him or not because he is a top-order batter and there is no place there at times and it might not be there now also. Let’s be honest, there is Rohit Sharma, there is KL Rahul and there is Shikhar Dhawan – who should be there. But it’s absolutely impossible that his name will not be discussed,” Aakash Chopra concluded.