Left-handed opening batsman Shikhar Dhawan scored his 16th century in the second ODI between India and Australia at Punjab Cricket Association Stadium in Mohali on Sunday.
Dhawan’s century came off 97 balls when he swept Adam Zampa down to the fine leg boundary. He brought up his century in the last ball of the 32nd over with KL Rahul for a company.
His last century came on September 23, 2018, when he scored a match-winning 114 off just 100 balls against Pakistan in Dubai during the Asia Cup.
Dhawan was not having the best of series, until this game, with scores of 0, 21 and 1 from the first three games. He hadn’t fared better in the ODIs against New Zealand either, as he managed scores of 6, 13 and 28 in the last three matches of the tour.
The poor run of form prompted former India cricketers Gautam Gambhir and VVS Laxman to say that KL Rahul would be a better choice for India looking forward to the 2019 ICC World Cup.
“He (Dhawan) was never my backup opener. He was always my first-choice. The kind of form he has shown in the two T20Is… I thought was fabulous. He was our best batsman though Virat Kohli and other people got runs. They should have continued giving him these five games (ODIs). Irrespective of how he delivers, he should have played all these games,” Gautam Gambhir said before the start of the match.
“When you play the first match at the World Cup, you want all your batsmen to be in top form. Not only these two matches, the IPL and the warm-up matches at the World Cup, I think the team management will be looking at whether KL Rahul is hitting the ball well or Shikhar Dhawan,” VVS Laxman had said.
“Shikhar has not been in great form. Australia series and then in New Zealand and these three ODIs he has looked very, very shaky. There was no rhythm to his game. He is a rhythm player. When players like him don’t have rhythm, they will not be able to rotate the strike and it will put pressure on his partner,” Laxman added.
With 143-run knock off 115 balls in Mohali, Dhawan has silenced his critics once again.
Here’s the video of Shikhar Dhawan’s celebration:
— BCCI (@BCCI) March 10, 2019