One of the biggest reasons why Team India was struggling in Twenty20 International cricket- especially while batting first- is the paucity of an aggressive approach at the top. Shikhar Dhawan’s underwhelming T20I career and his recent form were at the heart of India’s struggles. It is fair to say that Shikhar Dhawan: The fifty-over Internationals batsman- and Shikhar Dhawan: The Twenty20 International opener- are two completely different identities.
If you take an intersection between the southpaw’s impact in the shorter (ODI) and shortest (T20I) format of the game, the result- in most cases- will be a null set. However, as soon as KL Rahul got the chance to open the batting, (courtsey an injury to Dhawan) he showcased just why he is such an indispensable part of the T20I set-up.
And, former Australian leg-spinner Brad Hogg, just like many other pundits and fans feels that Rahul’s exploits against the West Indies (164 runs in three games at an average of 54.67 with two half-centuries) may well have shut the door on Shikhar Dhawan as far as T20I cricket is concerned.
Hogg took to Twitter where he wrote, “India utilizing Chahar and Bhuvneshwar with the new ball rather than spin, decisive move, allowing two swing bowlers to utilize there craft. Rahul looks as though he has ended Dhawan’s helm at the top of the order. #INDvWI #ICC #Cricket”
India utilizing Chahar and Bhuvneshwar with the new ball rather than spin, decisive move, allowing two swing bowlers to utilize there craft. Rahul looks as though he has ended Dhawan's helm at the top of the order. #INDvWI #ICC #Cricket
— Brad Hogg (@Brad_Hogg) December 12, 2019
KL Rahul was awarded the Player of the Match against West Indies
Meanwhile, KL Rahul, who scored 91 off 56 balls was awarded the Player of the Match and the opener seemed pretty satisfied with not only his but also the team exploits.
“Both of them (Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma) were in a destructive mood today. Happy that we won the series and every game is important for us leading up to the T20 World Cup. It’s obvious that our batting first record hasn’t been that great. Today was a great opportunity and very happy that it came off. This will give a lot of confidence and now we know what to do batting first,” Rahul said in the post-match presentation.
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