On the eve of the first ODI match between India and England, former cricketer Gautam Gambhir has put his weight behind out-of-form KL Rahul. Gambhir feels Rahul should be backed for all three ODIs despite his low string of scores.

“Dropping anyone will not do them any favour. He (Rahul) will have to play three ODIs. Someone is out of form, the only way you can bring them back is by giving them more opportunities,” Gambhir told ESPNCricinfo.

Gambhir reckoned it will not do any good to Rahul’s confidence as it is not a good feeling to be dropped.

“Because when you are sitting on the bench, it is not a good feeling. Because you know you have been dropped, and that feeling is not the best feeling,” Gambhir added.

Earlier in the day, India skipper Virat Kohli revealed that Rohit Sharma would open with Shikhar Dhawan.

That means Rahul – if in the XI – would be playing in the middle-order. With the Pandya brothers and Rishabh Pant and Shreyas Iyer in the middle-order, it is difficult for Rahul to find a spot in the XI.

Not long back, Rahul was in ominous form in the limited-overs cricket for India. He was the leading run-getter in the IPL last year. He amassed 670 runs at 55.83. It comprised of a hundred and five fifties. Just before the IPL, he was awarded the Man of the Series in the tour of New Zealand.

It is only recently that he has struggled to get among the runs.

The first ODI is expected to be a mouthwatering clash as two top sides in the world of cricket lock horns in Pune.