MSK Prasad: Shreyas Iyer can be a solution to our No. 4 slot

Updated: Nov 29, 2019, 07:52 IST | PTI | New Delhi

Chief selector Prasad hails Mumbai batsman's evolution in limited overs

Shreyas Iyer. Pic /AFP
Shreyas Iyer. Pic /AFP

New Delhi: Chairman of selectors MSK Prasad said Shreyas Iyer can be the solution to India's No. 4 problem in the limited-overs line-up given his fine growth as a player in the past two years. Iyer made his India debut in November 2017 with a T20 International against New Zealand and in the following month, played in his maiden ODI series, scoring back-to-back half centuries in the home rubber against Sri Lanka. Iyer, 24, played three ODIs in South Africa two months later before he was sidelined, only making a comeback in the ODIs against the West Indies in August this year.

"If you recall, we had inducted Shreyas Iyer [when Virat Kohli was rested] 18 months back into the ODI squad and he has done reasonably well. Unfortunately we couldn't continue with him. Having said that, he has evolved as a player now and he can be the solution to our No. 4 slot in both ODIs and T20s," Prasad said.

Hit in domestic cricket

MSK PrasadMSK Prasad

The highly-rated batsman kept piling on the runs for Mumbai in domestic cricket and also for India 'A' besides expressing disappointment at not getting enough chances at the highest level. Now he is back in the thick of things and has done well in both ODIs and T20s since the West Indies tour. Prasad, who was appointed chief selector in 2016 and is now nearing the end of his tenure, said it was unfortunate that Iyer had to miss out in the period leading up to the World Cup.

Scaling new heights

During the Prasad-led selection committee's tenure, India scaled new heights by winning a Test series in Australia, assembled a world-class pace attack (by giving Jasprit Bumrah a go in Tests), regained the World No. 1 ranking in Tests but was not able to win a major global event. Asked if India's lethal Test attack is the most significant legacy of the selection committee, Prasad said: "The primary duty of the selection committee is to identify right talent, groom them through a systematic process, induct them at an appropriate time into the senior squad and trust them to deliver by backing them.

"Except Bumrah, the other fast bowlers [Ishant, Umesh, Shami] had been in the circuit even before our committee took over. Only thing is that they all have combined well as a unit during our tenure...we have been instrumental in helping Bumrah to evolve into a top-class bowler across all formats," said the former India wicketkeeper-batsman.

No. of runs scored by Shreyas Iyer in last five T20Is at an average of 43.00

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