Cricketer-turned-commentator Aakash Chopra admitted that he never thought veteran player Dinesh Karthik would stage a comeback to the Indian national cricket team.
Karthik returned to the Indian side after three years on the phenomenal success of the IPL 2022 for Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), scoring 330 runs in 16 innings at 55 and a strike rate of 183.33.
He replicated his heroics for the Indian side as he scored his maiden T20I half-century in the fourth match despite making his debut in India’s first T20I match against South Africa in 2006. Karthik slammed 55 off 27 balls to power India to a respectable 169/6 and they eventually won by 82 runs to level the series 2-2.
Dinesh Karthik for T20 World Cup 2022?
In the first T20I against the West Indies, Karthik scored 41 off 19 balls with the help of four boundaries and two sixes at a strike rate of 215.79 to power India’s score to 190/6.
The 37-year-old, through leaps and bounds, has made a strong case for his T20 World Cup selection in Australia.
Dinesh Karthik’s story is not over yet: Aakash Chopra
Chopra mentioned how everyone, including himself, believed Karthik’s career was over when the latter was out of selectors’ radar. The former Indian player said Karthik’s fire and hunger has been key to his international return.
“He is finished, he will not come now to play, how will he get a place now, this is a game of youngsters, a lot of people asked him to go home, that it’s over. In fact, I also felt what he is doing is not going to be possible,” Chopra said on his YouTube channel.
“But as they say, one who dares never loses. One who doesn’t accept defeat, that player definitely wins. Dinesh Karthik the finisher, he has reinvented the wheel. The fire is burning, don’t let that fire extinguish. This story is not over yet,” he added.
Karthik is named in India’s Asia Cup 2022 squad and will be key to the Rohit Sharma side to retain their title. India will play arch-rivals Pakistan on August 28 at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.