ICC World Cup 2019: I Will be the Small First Aid Kit That Will Travel With the Team Says Dinesh Karthik
Team India back-up wicket-keeper for 2019 World Cup, Dinesh Karthik has called himself as the “band-aid” which India might use for the first choice wicket-keeper MS Dhoni in case he is unavailable or gets injured midway through the tournament. Dinesh Karthik who is leading the Kolkata Knight Riders franchise in the ongoing IPL was preferred ahead of 21-year-old Rishabh Pant. Chairman of selectors, MSK Prasad clarified that Karthik got the nod because of his superior wicket-keeping skills.
Dinesh Karthik has been picked as the backup wicket-keeper but there are possibilities that he might also bat at No 4 or play the finisher’s role. Dinesh Karthik is well aware of the fact that he can also make the XI solely as a batsman. He has done a good job as a finisher for India in the recent past and he might be handed the job in the showpiece event. Karthik also believes in himself that he can deliver purely as a batsman.
“Look, as far as MS Dhoni is concerned, I am just that small first-aid kit that will travel with the team,” Karthik told reporters at a media interaction. “If he (Dhoni) gets injured then I will be the band-aid for the day. I am, however aware that I can bat at No. 4 and or be the finisher, if given the opportunity. Post IPL, I will prepare every day knowing and believing that I can deliver purely as a batsman as I have performed that role earlier.
Karthik is pretty excited to be part of the Indian World Cup squad who will look to reclaim the trophy which they won in 2011. It was just a couple of years back that Karthik made his return to India cl=olours. He was well aware of the fact that if he performed well in this period he could surely make it to the final squad for the 2019 World Cup. Karthik further revealed that the selectors were pretty clear in their selection and wanted to give both the wicket-keeper batsmen their due opportunities/.
“It is a special occasion, I am lucky and grateful. My journey for the 2019 World Cup began when I returned to the Indian team in 2017. I started believing that if I do something special, I can be part of this amazing team that will play the World Cup.”
Dinesh Karthik wasn’t picked for the last ODI assignment for India ahead of the World Cup. It was Rishabh Pant who got a nod in the ODI series against Australia. However, his ordinary glovework might have prompted the selectors to go with a more experienced Dinesh Karthik for the World Cup. Rishabh Pant has been named as one of the standby’s for the tournament and he might travel if one of the batters gets injured.
“The chairman (MSK Prasad) called me up and said that ‘we have decided to give both wicket-keepers equal opportunities.’ He made it very clear that they would be giving me an opportunity on India’s tour of Australia and New Zealand, and irrespective of my performance, Rishabh will be given his chance in India’s home series against Australia. It was very clear communication and I liked the clarity.
“There will always be someone who will miss out, that’s the nature of the game. But we (Pant and I) never talked about it. He was aware of his opportunity and so was I. If he had been selected, I would have been disappointed. Now that I have been selected, I’m sure he is a bit disappointed,” Karthik said.
Karthik hailed Rishabh Pant as one of the fines talents of the modern generation and he is well aware of the fact that he might be sharing with Pant in the near future. Karthik described Pant as a special player and he is looking forward to play more with him.
“Pant is a special player,” he said. “I am sure he is going to play for India for a long time. If I can play along with Dhoni, why can’t we two (Pant and I) share the same dressing room post the World Cup?”
Dinesh Karthik hasn’t been in the best of touches in the ongoing IPL so far. However, the selectors decided to go in favour of his superior wicket-keeping skills. The exclusion of Rishabh Pant was a debatable one but considering a global event like the World Cup, the selectors went with an experienced and proven customer.
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