Virender Sehwag, former Indian skipper and dashing opener has opined that current opener Shikhar Dhawan will retain his spot for the next 2 T20Is against Australia despite his slightly indifferent form in the tour so far with the bat.
He made this observation when asked by fans if there are doubts over Shikhar Dhawan’s selection for the last two T20Is during a discussion on the Sony Sports network.
Virender Sehwag: Shikhar Dhawan Should Get More Chances For His Experience
Virender Sehwag responded by commenting that Shikhar Dhawan deserves more chances because of the experience he has atop the order. The left-hander played a vital 74-run knock in the first ODI but was unable to convert it into a big hundred and take India to winning ways.
“I don’t think so. Because the sort of experienced player he is, I feel Shikhar Dhawan will and should get more chances. Although in one of the ODIs I think he had scored 25-30 runs but he could not convert that to a big score.”
The former Indian opener highlighted that Shikhar Dhawan is on the back of some excellent performances in IPL 2020 including centuries in two consecutive matches. He finished IPL 2020 with 618 runs as 2nd highest run-getter after KL Rahul who scored 670 runs.
“But the form he was in the IPL, with two centuries, I don’t think he should be left out for the next two T20Is because he has the experience and when he fires, he will play good cricket and contribute for the team.”
Virender Sehwag believes Shikhar Dhawan needs to take some more time while opening the innings. Shikhar Dhawan managed to score just a solitary run in the first T20I against Australia. Virender Sehwag pointed out that it is not easy for an opener to score runs in difficult Australian conditions against a quality pace attack.
“At times, it is difficult for an opener to score runs at will in these conditions against such a good bowling attack. Because I have gone through that stage, it is not easy to score runs in Australia against the new ball.”
Shikhar Dhawan had a more or less decent three-match ODI series against winners Australia, aggregating 120 runs averaging 40 in 3 innings. But he was clean bowled by a Mitchell Starc delivery in the first T20I after having scored just a solitary run off as many as 6 balls. He was out in the 3rd over.
Virender Sehwag: More Time Should Be Given To Shikhar Dhawan, And He Should Rotate Strike With KL Rahul In Golden Form
The 42-year-old ex-opener iterated that Shikhar Dhawan needs to be given a longer run while asking his fellow Delhi born opener to be a little more circumspect at the top of the order.
“So, I feel a little more time should be given to Shikhar Dhawan and he should also take his time while playing.”
Virender Sehwag concluded by observing that Shikhar Dhawan should look to rotate the strike at the start of the innings since another opener in T20Is KL Rahul is in stellar form. He added on the same note that the Delhi Capitals opener Shikhar Dhawan can make up for it when the spinners are introduced into the attack.
“When KL Rahul is batting with him, the form he is in, he is scoring runs at a fast pace. So, if Dhawan can just rotate the strike and once the spinners come later on, he can cash in and build a good partnership,” Virender Sehwag added.
The southpaw would like to make amends on the series in the last two T20Is to be played in Sydney. The 35-year-old Shikhar Dhawan who incidentally was born on 5th December had a successful IPL 2020 scoring back to back tons and finishing as 2nd highest run-scorer with 618 runs. His average is below 30 in T20Is unlike in IPL, Tests or ODIs and he will look to celebrate his birthday in style by winning the next two T20Is.