After a great start to the T20 World Cup campaign with wins against Pakistan and Netherlands, India were brought down to earth as they were beaten by a competitive South African side at the Optus stadium in Perth. The match went down to the last over, but by then South Africa had already gained the upper hand as they went on to beat India by five wickets.
Nevertheless, the images of Dinesh Karthik leaving the field made some of his fans a bit concerned. Meanwhile, for Rishabh Pant fans it was the exact opposite as they saw the wicket-keeper replacing DK in the middle. When former India cricketer Virender Sehwag was asked about this decision, he said Pant should have been in the playing eleven.
“Ye toh pehle din se hona chahiye tha. Vo vahan Test cricket games, ODI games aur perform kiya hai. Dinesh Karthik kab Australia in play hain? Ye koi Bangalore ki wicket nahi hai. Main aaj bhi ye hi keh raha tha ki Hooda ki jagah Pant ko khilaate, unko vahan khelne ka anubhav hai. Unhone Gabba ka ghamand toda hai Australia ka. (This should have been the case from the first day. Pant has played Tests and ODIs there, and has performed. When did Dinesh Karthik last play in Austrlaia? This isn’t a Bangalore wicket. I said this even today that Pant should’ ve been in the team instead of Hooda, Pant has the experience of playing here. His Gabba innings is a legend),” Sehwag said on Cricbuzz.
“Main yahan bas rai de sakta hu, baaki management jisko bhi khilaaye. Agle match me problem unki hai, agar Karthik fit hote hain toh same scenario pe jaayenge. Meri nazar me Rishabh Pant pehle bhi hone chahiye the. (I can only give them suggestion, it’s the management’s decision. If Karthik is fit, they will go back to him again. But according to me, Rishabh Pant should’ve been in the XI from the start),” said Sehwag further.
Karthik had a few bad outings in T20 World Cup. While against Pakistan he couldn’t close the match, he was out for 15-ball six against South Africa which didn’t help matters either.