Shikhar Dhawan’s career as an Indian cricketer has become a topic of discussion as he has lost his Test spot back in 2018 and now been overlooked in the T20I side for quite a while.
The southpaw is getting picked only in the ODI squad and with Team India playing relatively less 50-over matches lately, Dhawan’s future seems uncertain at times.
Despite amassing over 500 runs in the last two IPL editions in 2020 and 2021, Dhawan couldn’t find a place in the T20 World Cup squad last year and still considered for India’s T20I scheme of things.
Now, the left-handed opener himself seems focusing more on ODI cricket and his main objective is to attain success in next year’s ODI World Cup at home.
Dhawan will be seen in action in the ODI series against England, starting July 12 at the Oval, and will lead the team in the upcoming 50-over series in West Indies.
“I understand the need to prepare well before a tour, so I make sure to keep focusing on my basics and the method of my preparation. I had been practising for quite some time for the England ODIs and I’m sure I’ll be in fine rhythm in the coming matches,” he told Telegraph India.
“My focus is definitely on next year’s World Cup and for that, I want to play as many matches as possible for India and do well there. In between, there will be the IPL as well, so I will try to do well there and also look to play the domestic one day and T20 matches,” the 36-year-old added.
Dhawan is joining the team after five months, having last featured in the ODI series against West Indies in February.
“I’ve loads of experience in the first place. Also, I’m quite confident about my basics and technique, which are important facets for an opener.
“At the same time, a calm mind helps me build my innings and convert it into a big score. That keeps me in a good headspace,” he stated.
Maintaining his physical fitness is also a big challenge for Shikhar Dhawan.
“I eat less carbs at night nowadays, unlike what I used to earlier,” he said.
Later this year, Dhawan’s academy, Da One Sports, will be launched in Gurgaon. Besides cricket, kids will be provided training on football, tennis, badminton, swimming etc.
Talking about his initiative, Shikhar said: “Cricket has given me so much, so I too should give something back to it.
“I came from a humble family and turned my dreams into reality. I will motivate the kids to do the same. The kids need to be taught not just about cricket, but about life as well. The focus will be on overall grooming for kids.
“Their physical activities are very much essential as because of so many electronic gadgets nowadays, they remain at home. So you need to get them out and play sport, feel the nature.”
(With Telegraph India inputs)