Cricket

IPL 2023: ‘This is nothing new in cricket or this just happened to me’

Veteran batter Shikhar Dhawan has been one of the best players for India in the ODI format over the past decade. Shikhar Dhawan has spoken openly about his sudden removal from the squad in January when team management chose young sluggers Shubman Gill and Ishan Kishan over him to build the squad for the upcoming World Cup.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) made a bold decision to ditch the veteran hitter with the world championship just months away. Dhawan led the Men in Blue in the 50-over format in 2022 in the absence of seniors. The left-handed hitter has had a decent run over the last year, hitting 688 carries with a decent batting average of over 70 in 22 ODIs.

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In an interview with Aaj Tak, Shikhar Dhawan said that he is not the first player to be kicked off the team in cricket and many cricketers have suffered the same fate. Dhawan believes that the captain, coach and selector make a decision after much thought.

“This is nothing new in cricket. Or it just happened to me, many others have suffered the same fate. There are times when you play well all year and then your form dips for a month or two, sometimes that outweighs your performance throughout the year. When a captain, a coach and an instructor make a decision, they give it a lot of thought.” said Shikhar Dhawan.

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For a moment I thought I might be off the team – Shikhar Dhawan

Shikhar Dhawan announced that management will give him a spot on the ODI team if Rohit Sharma takes over as captain. The southpaw said he should focus on his cricket and prepare at home for the 2023 ODI World Cup.

“When Rohit took over the captain’s post, he gave me ample support along with Rahul Dravid. They told me they wanted me to focus on my cricket and that my vision should be the next World Cup. 2022 was very good for me, I was consistent at ODIs” said Dhawan.

“But there’s this young guy who’s done well in two formats and when my form faltered in a series or two, they gave Shubman a chance and he lived up to their expectations. We are used to such situations. When Ishan Kishan hit a double century against Bangladesh, I thought for a moment I might retire from the team.” he added.

The 37-year-old will lead the Punjab Kings (PBKS) franchise in the 16th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL). The Kings begin their campaign in the mega-tournament against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) on Saturday, June 1st.

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