Dinesh Karthik has been in great form lately.© BCCI
Dinesh Karthik, with his performance in the 2022 Indian Premier League (IPL) and the recently concluded India-South Africa T20I series, has instilled this belief that he can be an excellent finisher in the T20I format. The 37-year-old scored a brilliant half-century in the fourth T20I against South Africa which was crucial in India to tie the series 2-2. Karthik’s performance has led many former players like Sunil Gavaskar to say they would be surprised if Karthik doesn’t get a chance in India’s squad for the 2022 T20 World Cup.
Former Indian cricketer all-rounder Irfan Pathan has now compared Karthik’s range of shots to that of South African great AB de Villiers.
“You won’t find many players with such a range (of shots). The kind of range this player has… I’m not comparing Dinesh Karthik with AB de Villiers in ability but I’m talking about range. His range is like that” , Irfan Pathan said on Star Sports after the fifth T20I between India and South Africa on Sunday, which was abandoned due to rain in Bangalore.
“He will hit straight, switch-hit, play fast leg side bowlers, play a sweep shot. He has all these shots. When needed, he often goes out and he also often leans on the leg side. He uses the line very well. He uses his feet very well. He plays the spin very well, he also plays the fast bowlers well. If you ask him to hit on the first ball, he does that too. As a finisher he is really important.
Meanwhile, following his recent exploits, veteran Karthik jumped 108 places to 87th in the latest ICC T20 batting rankings, even as young flyhalf Ishan Kishan broke into the top 10. Kishan finished the series with two half-centuries against South Africa and was the top points scorer with 206 points at an average of 41. This form moved the left-hander up one place to sixth in the latest T20 standings for hitters. Karthik has been in excellent form since the IPL 2022 and had some blistering shots in the T20 series against South Africa.
Pakistani skipper Babar Azam still holds the No. 1 spot in the T20 batting rankings and Kishan is the only Indian player ranked in the top 10.
Yuzvendra Chahal was the tallest player in the T20 standings for bowlers, with the Indian spinner jumping three places to 23rd after his six wickets in the South African series.
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