Indian opener Shikhar Dhawan’s poor form has coincided with the brilliant form of KL Rahul. Rahul has been performing brilliantly in all the formats and there are speculations all around that the Karnataka batsman might replace Dhawan in the team. However, Dhawan is unfazed by the threat possessed by Rahul and said that the competition in the team for the opening slot is a healthy sign and will motivate the players to give their best.
“KL Rahul has batted well in Test cricket as well as in T20 cricket and his form is good for the team. It’s actually good to have competition. There are others who are also competing to get into the Indian team as well. This is how it goes and it’s good for Indian cricket,” Shikhar told mediapersons after the Duleep Trophy final.
Dhawan started the West Indies tour brightly with a score of 84 in the first match but then scored 27, 26 and 1 before being dropped for the final Test. He was also dropped for the T20 series against the same opposition and Rahul who was picked in the team, took full advantage of the situation and scored a century each in the Test series and T20 series.
“I was dropped during the last T20 game in the US and I motivated myself to raise my standard. First I look outside for help and then get the solution within,” Dhawan explained.
His selection in the team for the series against New Zealand was highly debated and some quarters suggested that his friendship with captain Virat Kohli played a vital role in it. However, he rubbished that rumour and said:“Performance at the highest level is what matters and as far as friendship is concerned that is on a different level. You can’t mix these two things.”
On his experience of working with coach Anil Kumble, the southpaw said:“He is an inspiration to our team. We look up to him for his aggressive attitude and he is also a knowledgeable person. It is a great thing to have him as a coach.”
Meanwhile, he also said that New Zealand have quality players who can a make an impact in the series and also hinted that the series will be played on spinning pitches.
“New Zealand have some good players like their captain Kane Williamson and Tim Southee. They can make an impact in the series.
“At the same time, it could be a spinning track in the series. So, the New Zealand spinners can also do a good job. I believe one of their spinners, Mitchell Santner, who bowled well in the World T20 here has also come with the team,” Dhawan pointed out.