Former Indian off-spinner Harbhajan Singh extended support to the under-fire Dinesh Karthik and backed the veteran wicketkeeper-batter to continue playing as a finisher for Team India in the ongoing ICC T20 World Cup 2022 in Australia.
Karthik has failed to live up to expectations in the ongoing T20 World Cup 2022 in Australia, scoring only 14 runs in four matches so far, which led many to call for dropping the veteran keeper and bringing Rishabh Pant back into the playing XI for the remainder of the tournament.
However, Harbhajan isn’t agreeing with the notions, as he claimed that many players in the Indian team also failed with the bat without mentioning their names, but they are possibly Rohit Sharma (74), Hardik Pandya (47), and KL Rahul (72), but nobody talks like that for them because of their big stature.
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Harbhajan Singh said on Sports Tak: “Dinesh Karthik jab injured hue, tab maine kaha tha Pant ko laaiye. Agar fit hain, toh aap Karthik ko khilaaiye. Aap unko lekar isliye gaye the kyunki vo finisher hai, aur aap Pant ko udhar ballebaazi nahi karaoge jidhar Karthik karte hain (When Karthik was injured, I said that we should bring back Pant. But if he's fit, Karthik should play because you selected him as a finisher. You can't play Pant in that role).”
Then, the anchor said, “Lekin 3 failures ho gaye hain Karthik ke. (But Karthik has had 3 failures now).” To which the former cricketer replied: “Dekhiye, aise kuch aur bhi khilaadi hain jinke failure hue hain. Par unka kad-kaath ucha hai iss vajah se hum unki baat nahi kar rahe. Jidhar Dinesh Karthik ballebaazi karte hain, vo sabse mushkil kaam hota hai. Yuvraj Singh aur MS Dhoni, jitni tareef karo unki kam hain. Unke baad agar kisi pe finisher ki taraf nazar jaati hai toh vo Hardik Pandya hai. Agar Karthik mila hai, toh uska thoda mauka de do.
(See, there are other players who have failed too. But their stature is high, so we don't talk about them. Dinesh Karthik's batting position is difficult. Yuvraj Singh and MS Dhoni have batted there brilliantly; after them, Hardik Pandya came to the finishing role. Now we have Karthik, we should give him a chance).”
Harbhajan signed off by saying, “Bande ne badi mehnat ki hai, run bhi banaake aaya hai. Just 3 mauko ke baad ye mat sochiye ki vo flop ho gaya hai. Mauka baraabar ka hina chahiye, agar upar waalo ko backing mil rahi hai toh neeche waalo ko bhi milni chahiye.
(He has worked hard, he has scored runs. You can't say he has flopped after three chances. Everyone should have equal opportunities, if top-order players are getting the backing, lower-order players should also receive that).”