Dinesh Karthik has arguably been the best finisher in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022. With a tally of 210 in eight matches, while batting in the lower order, he has been Royal Challengers Bangalore’s (RCB) most impactful player. His consistent performances and powerful big hits has led to the speculation about the 36-year-old making a comeback to the Indian cricket team with the T20 World Cup, scheduled to be held in Australia later this year. His strike-rate of 200.00 in the IPL 2022 so far has led many to believe that he will be the ideal candidate for the role of the finisher in the Indian team.
However, former India player Sanjay Manjrekar feels that Karthik has many other questions to answer before such a call can be taken.
“Only if he maintains his current form. I am going to be a little more pragmatic. We are just about halfway through this IPL. Let’s wait till the end of the league and see if the form is still intact. When you say we want DK in the team, you want a guy out,” Manjrekar told ESPNCricinfo.
“But when I’m looking at the incumbents, it’s tough to get into India’s Playing XI. Because he’s looking only at No. 5,6,7 spots. He’s not someone who can bat up the order… that’s not being considered I think. He will have to displace Rishabh Pant. We will have to start looking at Hardik Pandya vs Dinesh Karthik. It’s not going to be easy,” he added.
But former India coach Ravi Shastri said that Karthik should be given a chance.
“Well, the way he is playing, he has an absolute chance. Why not? He is in form, with the amount of cricket that is being played these days, you never know when there could be an injury to anyone. The way he is playing now, India need a finisher and he could make it to the side. Of course, Rishabh Pant would be your first wicketkeeper but, on the tour, you may need three. With COVID, you might need three keeps. He definitely has a big big chance, he is banging on that door, he is just waiting to kick it open,” Shastri said on ESPNcricinfo’s ‘Run-Order’.
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