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No Shikhar Dhawan? Former chief selector names his replacement in T20Is

Asian Age 2019-11-07 05:45:00
 The former opener Kris Srikkanth went on to state that Shikhar Dhawan’s approach in T20Is is baffling and that KL Rahul could challenge for the role of the opener. (Photo: PTI)

Srikkanth said that even though there is no need to make a drastic change, they need to rethink the combination of the openers.

Mumbai: Former Indian captain and chairman of the selection committee Krisnamachari Srikkanth implored India’s team management to find a solution to the problem of a settled combination of openers in T20Is. Srikkanth said that even though there is no need to make a drastic change, they need to rethink the combination of the openers.

In a column for The Times of India, he wrote, “The defeat in Delhi should not lead to any knee-jerk reaction. With the T20 World Cup in mind, these experiments are required and if you’re not fielding the best side, a reversal has to be accepted as part of the learning. However, the team management must find a settled combination sooner than later.”

He added, “Workload management is also vital, so the think tank does have their work cut out. As often in the past, India failed to accelerate during Powerplay. Rohit Sharma often makes it up but Shikar Dhawan does fail to shift gears when required and that has cost the team.”

The former opener went on to state that Dhawan’s approach in T20Is is baffling and that KL Rahul could challenge for the role of the opener. He said, “What baffles me is the approach of Dhawan. His inability to go out and play his natural game despite being a senior member is hurting the team. I will stick my neck out and field KL Rahul as an opener in this format. Along with Rohit, the team will have two explosive batsmen when field restrictions are in place.”

Even though Shikhar Dhawan was the top scorer for India in the 1st T20I against Bangladesh, his slow conversion rate could be the possible reason for his criticism by Kris Srikkanth.

Srikkanth also backed the severely criticised wicket-keeper, Rishabh Pant. He suggested that he would like to see Pant given a longer run at the number 4 position. He said, “With Virat Kohli firm at one-drop, I would like to see Rishabh Pant be given an extended (fair) run at four. Let’s face it, the top-four make or break games in T20s. Once we have settled batsmen who are assured of their roles, I am sure India will do well in the World Cup.”

He also went on to say, “I do understand the logic behind Saha taking over in Test cricket, but Pant should be the primary pick in white-ball cricket. Any comparison to MS Dhoni should stop. It is not doing the youngster any good and players like Dhoni are once in a generation.”