IPL 2022: Dinesh Karthik dares to dream, but will the coaches have to? | Cricket News


Amazing shape of the paver for BCR has led to calls for its inclusion in Team IndiaThe T20 World Cup squad for Australia later this year
Just a few months ago, while India were playing a Test series in England, Dinesh Karthik was commentating for the official broadcasters. Following his success at the communication box, when asked by TOI if he would also continue next season, Karthik said: “I will, if it doesn’t interfere with my cricket. My dream is to continue playing for India.”
At the time, this dream seemed a bit far-fetched. But after his batting exploits in this IPL for Royal Challengers Bangalore, a place in Australia’s T20 World Cup squad in October-November no longer looks like a distant dream.
Karthik has been in exceptional form in this IPL, batting at a 200 strike rate behind in the order and taking RCB on the cusp of qualifying. Such was his influence as a finisher that RCB skipper Faf du Plessis said after his side’s win over Sunrisers Hyderabad on Sunday that he planned to pull out just to let Karthik in.
“If DK keeps hitting sixes like that, everyone wants to have him for as long as possible. In fact, I wanted to get out or step aside to let him try,” Du Plessis said of the 8-ball 30 of Karthik.

Sources close to Karthik told TOI that the right-hander has put in a lot of effort and hard work for the IPL this season. “He was just determined to tell himself that he was a long way from retirement. Whether it was playing practice matches for India Cements two weeks before the IPL or working on his running and bodybuilding specific to the finish, it was just an all-out effort on his part,” the source said.
This brings us to the crucial question whether these winning performances for the RCB will help the 36-year-old secure the finisher spot in India’s squad for the T20 World Cup.
If, with Covid issues in mind, it’s a 20-member squad, Karthik will be almost a certainty. But the real competition begins if it’s the normal 15-member squad (or a spot in the playing XI). The Indian team management, when it comes to T20 cricket, seem to have No. 6 and No. 7 as all-rounders, two slots almost reserved for Hardik Pandya (if he plays) and Ravindra Jadeja.
In that case, including Karthik purely as a hitter might be tough. “Karthik was part of the 50+ World Cup squad in 2019 as backup goalkeeper for MS Dhoni.
While KL Rahul was not considered a keeper at the time, Rishabh Pant was only drafted after 15 players suffered injuries. It’s not easy to find a place for Karthik solely as a hitter in the 15, even though he’s in great shape right now. But his chances increase dramatically if one of Pant or Rahul gets injured,” former India fly-half Devang Gandhi, who was part of the 2019 selection committee, told TOI.
The fact that the T20 World Cup will be played in Australia, where the grounds will be significantly different, will also be taken into account.

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