Lakshmipathy Balaji Feels ‘All-Rounder Tag’ Weighs on Vijay Shankar

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India vs Australia 2019: Lakshmipathy Balaji Feels ‘All-Rounder Tag’ Weighs on Vijay Shankar 

India vs Australia 2019: Lakshmipathy Balaji Feels ‘All-Rounder Tag’ Weighs on Vijay Shankar
Laxmipathy Bajali backs Vijay Shankar as a batsman. RAVI KANOJIA.

Former Indian National Cricket Team fast bowler Lakshmipathy Balaji has cautioned the team on Wednesday (March 6) by referring Vijay Shankar should be seen as a batsman. He added it’s ‘too much’ while putting weight on Shankar as an all-rounder. He has eventually praised Shankar for his 41-ball 46-run knock in the second ODI of India vs Australia 2019 series in Nagpur which India won by eight runs.

“Vijay Shankar’s batting seems to be coming off very well. But that should not over-shadow his all-rounder’s tag,” Balaji told DNA.

Unfortunately, the right-handed batsman Shankar got out in an unfortunate manner when skipper Virat Kohli has had driven the ball straight before it dislodged the zing bails at non-striker’s end. In between, Adam Zampa in his follow through got fingertips on the ball to find Shankar well short of his crease.

During his quality knock, Shankar found a fence on five occasions.

Balaji put his weight behind the 28-year-old Tamil Nadu cricketer Shankar by saying we should focus on his batting.

Following early jitters, in the Nagpur ODI Shankar put up 81-run partnership alongside Kohli for the fourth wicket.

“Forget Vijay Shankar the all-rounder, let’s focus on Vijay Shankar the batsman. That innings of 46 was oozing class. Vijay Shankar is a fantastic batsman and a very capable bowler,” Balaji added.

Balaji believes Shankar is on his way to glory:

Vijay Shankar, Laxmipathy Balaji, India vs Australia 2019, 2019 World Cup
Vijay Shakar has the potential to deliver at a big stage. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

While speaking highly of Vijay, who has risen to the occasion following a mixed outing, Balaji is impressed with the way he has shown the progress after delivering goods for India A. While terming Shankar as a ‘phenomenal’ batsman, Balaji reiterated Shankar played a significant role with the ball.

Balaji recalled that Shankar bowled brilliantly in the Bengaluru Twenty20 International. The team management introduced Shankar at the expense of Hardik Pandya during the Tour Down Under.

“Just as a pure batsman, Vijay is phenomenal. His bowling is gaining momentum. He is making genuine contributions with the ball, though the numbers may not be that great. At best, he is the third or fourth seamer who needs to get his seam position right,” Balaji remarked.

Shankar has a partnership breaking ability: Balaji

India vs Australia 2019, Vijay Shankar
Vijay Shankar bowls India to a win in Nagpur. Getty Images.

Concurrently, the 37-year-old bowler is serving as a bowling coach for Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Chennai Super Kings (CSK).

The last-over heroics saw Shankar sealing the figures of two for 15 in 1.3 overs. He eked out two wickets in the final over when Australia required 11 off six balls.

“Vijay is one who will take the ball and bowl, breaks partnerships most of the times. Often, he has done the crucial role of changing the course of the game. That shows his ability to deliver when the team requires him more,” Balaji concluded.

Recently, delighted Shankar reiterated he would love to relish the moment by coming back again to succeed.

With Shankar showing improvement following each passing game, it has further extended his chances to set his sights on the 2019 World Cup. The quadrennial event will start on May 30.

However, Shankar recently revealed that he’s yet to ponder on his selection for the ODI showpiece in the United Kingdom (UK).

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