Shivam Dube, the Indian all-rounder, said that he didn’t walk into the national team with a goal to replace the more-established Hardik Pandya. Dube made his debut against Bangladesh in the T20Is back in November 2019, but apart from a performance here and there, couldn’t step up. In fact, he was taken for 34 runs in a single over during a T20I against New Zealand in Mount Maunganui.
He also made his ODI debut versus the West Indies, but lost his place to Hardik after the latter was picked for the series against South Africa. About his role in Team India, the 26-year-old feels that he’s there to win games for his side. The Mumbai-born Dube understands that Hardik’s return to the Indian playing eleven is pretty inevitable, bearing in mind his seniority.
I feel playing with two all-rounders is always good: Shivam Dube
“Whenever I am reminded that you are here to replace Hardik Pandya, I have said: “No, I am not here to replace Hardik Pandya, I am here to perform well and win matches for India”. Obviously Hardik is a senior and a crucial player, so whenever he is fit, he is going to walk into the team,” Dube was quoted as saying in an exclusive interview with Sportstar.
Despite Hardik’s selection, Dube reckons that India can do with picking two all-rounders since that will increase the chances of winning more matches.
“I feel playing with two all-rounders is always good for any team. It gives many options to the captain. I think there’s more percentage of winning matches with two all-rounders,” the Mumbai cricketer added.
Hardik developed a back injury after India’s home T20I series against South Africa way back in September 2019. Then he missed quite a few series and underwent surgery in London and it turned out to be successful. He was later picked in India A’s squad for the tour of New Zealand.
But he eventually missed out after failing a fitness test. Nevertheless, Hardik smashed an unbeaten 55-ball 158 in the DY Patil T20 Cup and staked his claim back into the national side. The Baroda cricketer is next scheduled to ply his trade for the Mumbai Indians in the 2020 edition of the IPL.
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