‘Fierce competition for spots in team’: Ex-wicketkeeper feels 30-year-old IND star 'needs clarity about his role’

Updated on Jul 28, 2022 07:37 PM IST

Team India's recent form in white-ball has been impeccable. They defeated England in both the formats earlier this month and have now followed it up with a 3-0 whitewash over West Indies in ODIs.

Shreyas Iyer, Shardul Thakur and Shikhar Dhawan celebrate the dismissal of Sharmarh Brooks during 1st ODI against West Indies(AFP)
Shreyas Iyer, Shardul Thakur and Shikhar Dhawan celebrate the dismissal of Sharmarh Brooks during 1st ODI against West Indies(AFP)

Team India's recent form in white-ball has been impeccable. They defeated England in both the formats earlier this month and have now followed it up with a 3-0 whitewash over West Indies in ODIs. The series win came after the visitors won two nail-biting encounters, while it was one way traffic in the final ODI, which saw over reduction due to rain.

Shubman Gill and Yuzvendra Chahal played a key role in India's win in the final encounter. Apart from Gill, Axar Patel played a crucial 35-ball 64* in the second ODI. Shikhar Dhawan, who led the unit in the absence of Rohit Sharma, also had a great outing, which saw him hit two half-centuries.

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One man's contribution which went unnoticed was of Shardul Thakur. The pacer scalped seven wickets in the three matches, finishing as the joint-highest wicket-taker alongside Yuzvendra Chahal. With the bat he, however, was not very effective managing just 10 runs in the two innings he got to bat.

Reflecting back on the series, former India wicketkeeper Saba Karim was not very impressed with Thakur and felt the “all-rounder” should be clear about his role in the team. "Although Shardul Thakur had a great series with the ball, he will need to remain clear about his role. If he is looked at as an all-rounder then he will have to contribute in both departments because of the fierce competition for spots in the team. Definitely the pool of fast bowlers we have right now is really good," Karim noted during an interaction on India News.

Also Read | ‘One thing? There are two’: West Indies head coach says 2 India youngsters reason for 3-0 result in ODIs

Thakur, who has build a bit of reputation with the bat, was careless in the second ODI, which India won by two wickets. With Axar leading India's battle from one end, Thakur failed to shoulder the responsibility and was dismissed on a six-ball three. His dismissal left a bulk of work on Axar and incoming batter Avesh Khan as India chased down the challenging 312-run target with two balls to spare.

Thakur, however, was not picked for any of the ODIs against England with Hardik Pandya given preference over him. The Gujarat Titans skipper was not part of the India squad for the three-match ODI series against West Indies but will be seen returning to action in T20Is, which starts from Friday.

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