If the national selectors were only looking at the just-concluded Irani Cup as their basis for selection for the Australia Test series, then Shikhar Dhawan, with scores of 63 and 0, would not have made it into the India squad where he replaced his Delhi teammate Gautam Gambhir.
Dhawan, 27, is thankful that Sandeep Patil & Co gave due consideration to his first-class season. “Thankfully, the selectors didn’t go only by my Irani Cup scorecard. I had a fine first-class season and I am happy that I will play alongside the likes of Virubhai (Virender Sehwag) and Sachin paaji (Tendulkar),” the southpaw said yesterday.
Dhawan is the new toast of Delhi’s cricketing circles. Never has he done so many interviews on a single day even though he has played for India in one-day internationals. The presence of the TV crew aroused curiosity in the A1 block of his West Jankpuri
Almost a decade back in 2004, Dhawan captained the India U-19 team which had the likes of Suresh Raina and RP Singh among others who have played a significant number of international matches for the country. His juniors like Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara have established themselves too. Dhawan, however, is a great believer in destiny.
“I have never envied someone else’s success. I am happy with what I have got so far. The great Matthew Hayden is an inspirational figure for me. He too has struggled in the early stage of his career, but made it up in his second phase,” said a humble Dhawan.
The Delhi Ranji Trophy skipper knows getting a break is just the beginning and it doesn’t guarantee a great future. He has learnt this from his ODI stint with the Indian team which lasted for just five matches.
Dhawan, who has played for three different franchises in the last five editions of the Indian Premier League, said the IPL helped him make a
“Facing Morne Morkel and Dale Steyn in the IPL has been a big learning curve. Suggestions from the likes of Sachin Tendulkar and Kumar Sangakkara have been very helpful too. It definitely changed my frame of mind in a positive way,” he said.
Dhawan, who recently married Esha Mukherjee, believed that lady luck is shining on him. “Yes, she is lucky for me. She has been a positive influence in my life,” Dhawan signed off.