Having won the series already, the third T20I offers India a chance to test their bench strength, but Uthappa feels otherwise.
With the series already won, having clinched victories in the first two games – by five wickets in Jaipur and by seven wickets in Ranchi – India have the freedom to test their young bench strength for the third and final game of the T20I series against New Zealand on Sunday. However, veteran wicketkeeper-batsman Robin Uthappa feels that captain Rohit Sharma and new head coach Rahul Dravid would not want to make any changes to the XI.
Uthappa feels that this series is more about the kind of approach that India will have in T20Is in series to come for the build-up for the next T20 World Cup, in 2022 in Australia, and hence they would want to make a strong statement by winning the series.
“This series is a lot more about Rohit Sharma and Rahul Dravid’s approach to how to keep this Indian team moving forward. So from my perspective, they wouldn’t want to change the side. They would want to make a strong statement by winning the series. It would be a good way to start,” he told ESPNCricinfo.
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India have so far handed their debut to all-rounder Venkatesh Iyer, who is looked at as a replacement for Hardik Pandya. However, he is yet to deliver a single delivery in the two games he played. He did bat, scoring 4 off 2 at No.5 in the opener and was promoted to No.3 in the second game where he scored 12 off 11.
Harshal Patel was handed the debut in the second game where he finished with figures 2 for 25 to win the Man of the Match award.
India still have the likes of Ruturaj Gaikwad, Ishan Kishan and Avesh Khan in the bench, waiting for their opportunities.