3 players who can replace Shikhar Dhawan as T20I opener
- In the absence of Shikhar Dhawan, who will be the best player to open alongside Rohit Sharma?
India is a nation that has always been known to produce some of the greatest batsmen of all time. It is only in the past few years that India's fast bowling stocks have witnessed a huge leap and have considerably overshadowed the emergence of some of the finest batting talents in the country.
Despite several skilled batsmen that we have seen in the recent times, there seems to be a dearth of quality openers in the longest form of the game as the national team continues to bear consequences of the shaky form of their regular openers. However, this is not the case in the white-ball format where the dynamic duo of Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan have done wonders for the team with their immaculate consistency for quite some time now.
In Sharma and Dhawan, India has one of the deadliest opening combinations in ODI cricket. However, their form in the T20Is has taken a dip. Especially in the case of Dhawan, who has found it tough to get going from the first ball in the shortest format of the game.
He has struggled in the past year, despite witnessing success in 2018. In his last nine T20I innings for India, Dhawan has scored runs at an average of a little over 20. His tally of 181 runs in 2019 draws serious contrast with his performance in 2018 when he finished as the highest run-scorer in the calendar year.
Since IPL 2019, the 33-year old has been in and out of the side owing to his injury and the lack of consistency. However, the management has trusted him all this while.
Going forward, the team management can consider roping in a few youngsters to partner with 'The Hitman' in the shortest format.
Here, we take a look at three players who can replace Shikhar Dhawan as the opening batsman in T20Is for India:
#3 Prithvi Shaw
A prodigy from Mumbai, Prithvi Shaw is one of the flag-bearers of Mumbai cricket who continues to lead the batting legacy of the city. Shaw's burst onto the scene was marked by his record-breaking 546 runs in a Harris Shield elite division match, back in November 2013. Three years later, he went onto become the second youngest Indian to register a Test century and the youngest Indian to do so in the debut match.
Touted as the future of India in all three formats of the game, Shaw has shown signs of growing into the best batsman in the world in the future. His performances in the IPL speaks volumes of his talent. He is a regular opener for Mumbai and even did the job for Delhi Capitals in IPL 2019. He's a perfect candidate for the opening position in the national side, given his ability to adapt quickly.
Though International cricket is a different ball game, his experience of playing high-pressure games in the IPL will help him cope with the pressure he encounters while facing International teams.
Also see – World Test Championship points table