Shikhar Dhawan
Shikhar Dhawan

Aakash Chopra Backs Dhawan: Former Indian opener Aakash Chopra backs Shikhar Dhawan who struggles to get back to his form in the ongoing Vijay Hazare Trophy 2021-22 tournament.

Team India will return to action in ODIs in January when the side takes on South Africa in a three-match away series. This will be the first ODI series for Rohit Sharma as the skipper.

Though BCCI President Sourav Ganguly explains the exact reason for Rohit Sharma’s appointment as ODI skipper, many fans believe that BCCI should considered Virat’s captaincy records before taking the decision of changing the ODI captaincy role.

Team India will tour South Africa to play 3 match Test series and as many as ODI series. Virat Kohli will lead Team India for the 3 match test series where Rohit Sharma has been ruled out of the series owing to an injury.

In the following 3 match ODI series Rohit Sharma is expected to return and lead the team whereas Virat Kohli in a press conference confirms that he will be available for the ODI series.

India ODI Captain
Rohit Sharma

Aakash Chopra Backs Dhawan

Senior batsman, Shikhar Dhawan’s inclusion in the South Africa ODI series gets under radar following his Vijay Hazare Trophy performance.

In the Vijay Hazare Trophy, a number of batters including Ruturaj Gaikwad and Venkatesh Iyer have made a strong case for selection in the ODI side. However, one particular batter – with huge experience under his belt – has struggled with form.

Shikhar Dhawan has scored only 58 runs in five matches for Delhi in the domestic fifty-over tournament, and there are speculations over his place in the ODI side.

Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra

However, former Indian opener Aakash Chopra has rallied behind the Team India star, insisting that a few bad performances in the domestic circuit cannot be the reason for dropping a player with such experience.

“12, 8 (18), 14, 12 and 0 – that’s his last five scores in a high-scoring Vijay Hazare Trophy. Should you select him? I think he should be. Dhawan is India’s proven customer. He has done phenomenally well in One-Day cricket. He is the Mr ICC. If we look at 2023 World Cup — if he stays fit — why not?” Chopra said on his official YouTube channel.

“India haven’t played ODI cricket in 2021, so why drop him? Some people had insisted that he should’ve even been selected in the T20 World Cup. Just because Ruturaj is scoring runs, or Iyer can open, or the Rohit-Rahul pair is set. I think dropping him would be grossly unfair.”

Chopra further insisted if a plan is made for other players in place of Dhawan, the opener must be communicated well in advance.

“If he plays badly, you drop him. But if someone’s doing better, you drop him — that’s not fair. If you’re dropping a proven Indian player on a few domestic performances, that would be very unfair. I think he should be in the tour of South Africa. If India is looking at a transition at some stage, please have a word with him. Communication is important — especially when you’re fading out a senior player. Do let them know, take them in confidence,” said Chopra.

Notably, Dhawan has been released by his IPL franchise Delhi Capitals ahead of the IPL 2022 mega auction.