My plans were to go to Melbourne and spend time with my family, says Shikhar Dhawan
- Shikhar Dhawan missed out on a possible double century yesterday
What's the story?
After scoring a 168-ball 190 on day 1 of the first Test against Sri Lanka, Shikhar Dhawan has sent a strong message to the selectors for dropping him from the initial squad.
In the post-day press conference, Dhawan spoke to the reporters and revealed that he was planning to go to Melbourne, spend time with his family and get ready for the ODI series. He also conceded that he was holidaying in Hong Kong and had to fly down to India immediately to join the team.
Extra cover: The World reacts to India's dominance on day 1
"My plans were to go to Melbourne and spend time with my family, and get fit for the one-day series. I was in Hong Kong on a holiday and from there I flew to India and joined the team. Destiny had a different plan. I was happy, of course, to make a comeback to the Test side. Unfortunately, (Murali) Vijay wasn’t fit. I had a good run before this Test series and I just came with the same confidence," Dhawan said.
In case you didn't know...
Shikhar Dhawan was not included in the initial 15-member squad that was supposed to tour Sri Lanka as the selectors preferred the first-choice openers Murali Vijay and KL Rahul and Abhinav Mukund as the back-up ahead of the Delhi batsman.
Vijay, who missed the IPL due to a wrist injury, failed to recover in time for the series and that gave Dhawan a lifeline by getting his nod in the squad. Once Rahul fell ill, Dhawan's place in the playing XI was confirmed and the Gabbar grabbed the opportunities with both his hands.
After choosing to bat first, India lost the wicket of Abhinav early and it was when Dhawan, in the company of Pujara, took charge of the proceedings. India went to lunch on 115/1 with Dhawan scoring 64 of those runs.
The second session saw an absolute decimation of the Sri Lankan team as Dhawan plundered 126 runs in the session. He had a great chance to score his first double hundred and maybe a triple, but he just threw his wicket in the last over before tea when he was just 10 short of his double ton.
Without a doubt, Dhawan was extremely lucky to get a place in the playing XI, thanks to Murali Vijay's injury and Rahul's illness. In their absence, Dhawan played one of his best innings in his career and in all likelihood, he cemented his place in the Test squad as one of the three openers at the expense of Abhinav.