Former Indian opener Gautam Gambhir believes that the 3-match ODI series against South Africa is the best opportunity that Shikhar Dhawan will get to prove his worth in the limited-overs format.
With Ruturaj Gaikwad making a case to be in the playing XI with a stellar performance in the Vijay Hazare Trophy, Dhawan’s time might soon be running out. Once Rohit Sharma also returns to the fold, it will only get harder for the southpaw unless he utilises the chance given in South Africa.
“It is a grand opportunity for him in South Africa. I am not a great believer in age and all that. His critics are saying that at 36, Indian cricket should look beyond Shikhar. My worry is the lack of runs in the Vijay Hazare Trophy. I hope he can put it all behind him and put his best foot forward.”
“There is a school of thought… a belief that Shikhar should not be played in the final eleven. I think that will be a disaster. Why would you take Shikhar to South Africa and then leave him on the bench? It will make no sense at all,” Gambhir wrote in his column for TOI.
“How good it will be to see him translate his social media form on the playing field” – Gautam Gambhir
Calling Dhawan a rage on social media, Gambhir said that it would be a delight to see him translate his social media presence and influence into effectiveness on the ground. Dhawan is actively engaged in making content for his viewers on social media.
“Shikhar Dhawan is a sensation on social media. He has close to 10 million followers on Instagram alone, which is almost ten times more than the population of Gurugram where he now lives. I’d recommend that there is something for everyone on his Insta handle.”
“There are fitness videos, dancing videos with his mother, dubsmash videos and there is also a video where Shikhar is playing the flute with perhaps his Guru. Trust me, it’s an absolute delight, all notes are in proper place just like a perfectly struck left-hander’s cover drive with the bat finishing on his right shoulder. How good it will be to see him translate his social media form on the playing field,” Gambhir concluded.
The second ODI will take place at the same venue on Friday at 2:00 pm IST.