Though he has been out of the Indian side for nine months now, wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik hasn’t given up hope of making a comeback in the future.
Karthik last played for India during their 2019 World Cup semifinal defeat to New Zealand, and while he acknowledges that a return to the 50-over side may be far-fetched after his poor returns in that tournament, he remains hopeful, and even feels it would be unfair if he isn’t given a chance in the T20I side.
“It does hurt, no doubt about that. I have always had this burning desire to play for my country and it hasn’t diminished one bit,” Karthik told PTI. “My record in T20s has been good. A big tournament like the World Cup did not go exactly as per the plan. I could understand the one-day bit [being dropped from the side], but even now, I would like to think that I stand a good chance of returning to the T20 side.”
Stats back Karthik’s aspirations: though his one-day numbers are unflattering, with an average of 30 and a strike-rate of 73, his T20I figures are world-class, with the corresponding numbers being 33 and 143.
Karthik has also carved out a reputation of being a finisher in T20Is, ever since his stunning heist in the 2018 Nidahas Trophy final. However, he realises that the path back to the side won’t be easy, given the abundant outflow of batting talent currently in the Indian set-up.
“It [being out of the team] is not something new to me, so I am comfortable in the space that I am in,” Karthik said. “There is a T20 World Cup around the corner, and I know if I do well, I stand a good chance of making the team. I know it gets tougher every time. The team is getting stronger all the time and it is great to watch. But it is my duty to get better as a player and the rest will take care of itself.”