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Shikhar Dhawan believes team management will give youngsters long run

Shikhar Dhawan said the ongoing series against the Proteas will be the perfect platform for the likes of Washington Sundar and Deepak Chahar to build their confidence.

By: PTI | Bengaluru |
September 21, 2019 5:00:15 pm
Shikhar Dhawan in action against South Africa. (Source: PTI Photo)

Senior opener Shikhar Dhawan on Saturday expressed optimism that the team management will give the youngsters a fair run to establish themselves going into next year’s World T20 in Australia.

Captain Virat Kohli recently made it clear that the youngsters will have to prove themselves in the “four or five” opportunities they get.

“(While) trying out youngsters, it is good to give them a good run because when new players come in, it takes time for them to express themselves. Young boys are taking these opportunities with both hands. I am sure the team management will give them a longer run,” Dhawan said on the eve of the third T20 International on Sunday.

He said the senior players are “always open” to helping their younger teammates like Shreyas Iyer or Rishabh Pant, who is currently battling indifferent form.

Seen as one with a bright future after Test tons in demanding English and Australian conditions, Pant is now feeling the heat for his shot-selection and temperament, with some calling for the inclusion of Sanju Samson or Ishan Kishan at his expense.

“Any time, any youngster wants to discuss something with us, we are always open to help them, always there for them,” Dhawan told reporters on the eve of the third T20 International against South Africa.

“For senior players like us, say someone like Rishabh comes in to bat or Shreyas coming in, we make sure we do the communication with them and make sure they are comfortable and not nervous. We make them think what is needed at that particular moment,” he said.

Dhawan added: “That’s what we do even when I am batting with Rohit or Virat, we keep discussing and that is very important. Communication is very, very important.”

He hoped that youngsters will get a decent run to prove their mettle in international cricket.

The southpaw said the ongoing series against the Proteas and matches scheduled in the near future will be the perfect platform for youngsters such as Washington Sundar and Deepak Chahar to build their confidence in the lead-up to the T20 World Cup.

Both players have impressed in recent times with their performance and attitude.

“Washington is bowling really good, giving us the breakthroughs and also choking the batsmen. He has got very good control and variety as well.

“Even Deepak Chahar, he swings the ball both ways and at the same time, he has pace as well. It is the perfect platform for them to perform and build the confidence for the T20 World Cup,” Dhawan said.

The senior batsman, whose World Cup in England was cut short by an injury, looked in fine touch during his match-winning partnership with skipper Virat Kohli in the second T20 against South Africa at Mohali.

“I have been playing well. I got a break and came back and even in West Indies, I didn’t score many runs, but I was middling the ball nicely. For me, it’s normal, it happens, four-five innings can go here and there. I know that my process is very strong, I am a keen observer of whatever I am doing.

“I will make sure I do everything in a detailed manner, and yes, sometimes some strategies don’t go your way, sometimes they do. It is part of the journey, I have always backed myself, I know the hard work I have put in, and I know that things will go good for me.”

Vijay Hazare after SA series

Shikhar Dhawan on Saturday said he will turn up for his state side Delhi in the upcoming Vijay Hazare Trophy.

Dhawan, who is presently engaged with the national team for the ongoing T20 series against South Africa, confirmed that he will play the 50-over domestic event beginning September 24.

“Now even after this series, I am going to play Vijay Hazare as well. I am looking forward to that. I make sure that whatever cricket I play, I play with all my heart whether it’s Ranji, Vijay Hazare or the Indian team,” Dhawan said on the eve of the third and final T20I against the Proteas.

Dhawan looked in good touch during his partnership with skipper Virat Kohli in the second match at Mohali.

“I had free time since I was not in the Test team, so thought rather than sitting at home or training, play matches which is good for my confidence and my skill levels.

“Match practice is the best practice so I thought it’s a good opportunity for me to go and express myself. I was not part of the Test team so I had the opportunity.”

There were also reports that Dhawan has pulled out of the initial few matches of the domestic tournament.

The Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) on Wednesday announced the squad for the tournament and batsman Dhruv Shorey was named as captain.

Rishabh Pant and Navdeep Saini were also included in the squad.

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