Birmingham, June 30: Former England captain Kevin Pietersen has urged India skipper Virat Kohli and coach Ravi Shastri to play under-fire all-rounder Vijay Shankar in a crucial World Cup clash for the hosts.
On Sunday (June 30), India take on England in what is being billed as the face-off of the showpiece and Pietersen took to social media to plead Kohli to not drop Shankar from the crunch tie.
"Dear Virat & Ravi - please don't drop Vijay Shankar. I think he's coming into his own and would potentially win you tomorrow's game," Pietersen tweeted.
Dear Virat & Ravi - please don’t drop Vijay Shankar.— Kevin Pietersen🦏 (@KP24) June 29, 2019
I think he’s coming into his own and would potentially win you tomorrow’s game.
Don’t think about Pant. He needs another 3 weeks prep before I think he can get into your World Cup side.
The former England star batsman also added young wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant is not yet ready to be drafted into the playing XI.
"Don't think about Pant. He needs another 3 weeks prep before I think he can get into your World Cup side," he wrote.
Shankar, who is currently occupying India's number four slot in the batting order, has failed to cash in on the opportunity with scores of 29 against Afghanistan and 14 against the West Indies.
Pietersen also posted another tweet to show how Kohli reacted to his earlier plea.
Virat found my tweet earlier quite funny! pic.twitter.com/9gf3QVbWLA— Kevin Pietersen🦏 (@KP24) June 29, 2019
India are currently placed second in the 10-team table with 11 points from six matches.
Pre-tournament favourites England have lost their last two games against Sri Lanka and Australia to find themselves in a tough situation at fourth place with eight points from seven games.