What Dinesh Karthik Is Doing In Indian Playing XI? Questions Raised On Wicketkeeper’s Place For T20 World Cup

The scenario with Dinesh Karthik is just growing more dramatic and intriguing with each game. While it is evident that the team management has molded Karthik to be India’s finisher for the T20 World Cup, at times, the manner it has treated him regarding his position in the playing XI has been quite perplexing. For instance, Axar Patel was forced to bat first during the first T20I between India and Australia in Mohali while Karthik was held back.

As Axar struggled to get going, Karthik’s momentum was also lost as he departed after scoring six runs off of five balls. Former cricketers questioned the decision to move Axar ahead of Karthik and keep him for the final few overs, which drew much criticism. Former Australia opener Matthew Hayden is one among the many who have questioned the change. He was pretty surprised and questioned Karthik’s place in the squad.

While commentating, Hayden said, “I was just thinking about the role of Dinesh. This role Dinesh is playing now, for the life of me, I can’t work out why he wouldn’t be in their batting now. It doesn’t make any sense to me whatsoever. See. I don’t want to give the impression that I’m disrespecting Dinesh Karthik but he should be batting more – it’s actually the opposite.”

Axar crushed a straight drive off Cameron Green just after Hayden made the remark on live television. It wasn’t enough to convince Hayden to reconsider though. The legendary Australian batsman maintained his stance and stated that, despite Axar’s recent stellar performance with the bat, Karthik should have more playing time.

He added, “ I think he is such a good player that he can come in and play this exact same shot. I question the role that he is playing as a finisher. I think there is a role for him to come up the order.”

Ajit Agarkar agreed with Hayden’s thoughts. The former India fast bowler emphasised how crucial it is for India to use and make the most of Karthik, particularly in light of the fact that they have made it apparent that they support the seasoned wicketkeeper more than Rishabh Pant.

Agarkar opined, “I find it very strange with regards to Dinesh Karthik. He is a good enough batter to walk in now. Doesn’t have to after the 16th over. And as improved as Axar Patel is, you have the expectation from Karthik to manage this sort of situation. At least you hope he does, considering he is playing ahead of Rishabh Pant as well in this XI. It happened in the South Africa series and again today, Axar is batting ahead of him.”

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