Can Dinesh Karthik makes comeback to the Indian team?

Dinesh Karthik, Through his flashy cameos, he’s improvised his strokes to put forth a vast array: he’s moved across his stumps and accessed the leg-side, and when bowlers have reverted to bowling at his stumps, he’s sat back and played lofted shots over long-off and long-on. Against the Punjab Kings, RCB found themselves in a commanding position when Karthik strode out to bat. That evening, he started attacking from the outset and ensured that his side breached the 200-run barrier, somewhat taking up the kind of role that AB de Villiers used to reprise. Most importantly, Karthik seems ready to tackle any challenge with an uncluttered mind.

Over the years, Karthik’s stop-start international career has been labeled by many as a ‘what could’ve been’ story in Indian cricket. His ODI debut came as a precocious 19-year-old, and he made his maiden Test appearance a couple of months later. At that stage, MS Dhoni hadn’t shot to fame, and Karthik was arguably the long-term wicketkeeping solution India had in mind. A variety of reasons, though, meant that he could never quite match the lofty expectations. There were fleeting glimpses of his brilliance, whereas Dhoni, once established in international cricket, hardly put a foot wrong, taking over wicketkeeping duties for a decade.

Dinesh Karthik old statement regarding CSK Team | CSK அழைப்பக்காக  காத்திருக்கிறேன் - தினேஷ் கார்த்திக் | Sports News in Tamil
Credits: Zee News

The sheer talent always persuaded India and several IPL franchises to keep placing their trust in Karthik, be it as a ‘keeper or a non-keeper. In a tournament that unearths new talent every season, not many would have expected Karthik to take the IPL by storm; not part of the India setup of late, and having ventured into commentary, it felt like the 36-year-old’s career had little scope in the future. This time out, though, it seems something has changed. Back to a new franchise after a topsy-turvy time at KKR, not only is he taking greater responsibility as a finisher for RCB, but he has also enjoyed extraordinary success.

He has walked into hopeless situations and bent them to his liking: so far, he’s scored 210 runs at an exceptional strike rate of 200. He’s only been dismissed twice, and in the death overs alone, he has mustered 148 runs at a strike rate of 231.25. It’s likely to do with clarity on his role; often used as a floater, Karthik has also stuck to his brief as a finisher at RCB, picking and choosing his moments to attack superbly late in the innings, while also retaining his versatility. Against Delhi Capitals, he realised that RCB needed to consolidate, and only scored 15 runs off the first 16 balls, yet ended up making 66 off 34 deliveries.

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Karthik played his best cricket throughout his tenure and want to continue with this

Through his flashy cameos, he’s improvised his strokes to put forth a vast array: he’s moved across his stumps and accessed the leg-side, and when bowlers have reverted to bowling at his stumps, he’s sat back and played lofted shots over long-off and long-on. Against the Punjab Kings, RCB found themselves in a commanding position when Karthik strode out to bat. That evening, he started attacking from the outset and ensured that his side breached the 200-run barrier, somewhat taking up the kind of role that AB de Villiers used to reprise. Most importantly, Karthik seems ready to tackle any challenge with an uncluttered mind.

मांजरेकर ने Dinesh Karthik पर दिया ये बड़ा बयान, बताया क्यो नहीं मिलेगी टीम  इंडिया में जगह
Credits: HindNow

Unsurprisingly, many including Sunil Gavaskar, have batted for his inclusion into India’s T20I side. And it’s a two-way street: off-late, India’s searched for firepower down the order, with Rishabh Pant not quite cracking the T20I code yet, Ravindra Jadeja being good in patches, and Hardik Pandya suffering from long layoffs due to injury. Venkatesh Iyer, one of India’s newest recruits, is a solid player down the ground, but hasn’t quite hit the strides yet with his finishing prowess, and isn’t enjoying a great season so far. Karthik, known for his 360-degree play, is good at accessing the long-off and long-on regions himself, but is versatile enough to hit in the ‘V’ behind the stumps too, keeping bowlers on their toes.

Along with his unconventional style, Karthik brings a lot of experience to the table, having made his international debut way back in 2004, and over the years, has been armed with better perspective – allowing him to absorb pressure, maintain equanimity and punish bowling mistakes. At the 2021 T20 World Cup, India struggled batting first against New Zealand and Pakistan, finding it difficult to break loose. And, Karthik, who has struck at 243.58 in the death overs when batting first in IPL 2022, has teased fans as a valuable option to have ahead of the next edition. Since the start of 2020, his death-overs strike rate in the first innings sits at 202.32 – the numbers are compelling enough.