Dinesh Karthik, the 37-year-old veteran, ignited IPL 2022 with his electrifying batting performances for the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB). The wicketkeeper-batter made his way back to the national team after almost three years based on his outstanding IPL performance, scoring 330 runs in 10 games at a strike rate of 183.33, and playing as a specialist finisher.
Karthik represented India in the recently concluded T20I series against South Africa and put up impressive performances throughout the series, which helped him secure a berth in the team.
During the fourth T20I of the series, the veteran slammed his first T20I half-century, smashing 55 off just 27 deliveries with a 200-plus strike rate. His effort enabled India to reach a competitive score of 169/6 in the game and ultimately defeat the Proteas by 82 runs.
Karthik batted with style during the entire innings, smashing the ball all around the park, replicating his IPL 2022 form.
Former India all-rounder Irfan Pathan, who shared the field with Karthik in India's inaugural T20I in 2006, noted a similarity between Karthik and renowned former South Africa star batter AB de Villiers during the debate.
“You won't find a player with such a range. See, I'm not comparing him with AB de Villiers in terms of ability, but his range is quite similar to him. He will hit you for sweep, he will go for a switch hit. He has all the shots. When needed, he charges down the track and yes, he does prefer the leg-side. But the way he uses his feet and gets in the line of the ball is brilliant,” Irfan said on Star Sports.
“He efficiently plays the spinners and fast bowlers. And if you ask him to hit from ball one, he can do that as well. For a finisher, it is very important and that is what Dinesh Karthik can do,” added Pathan.
Dinesh Karthik will be next seen in the forthcoming two-match T20I series against Ireland later this month on June 26 and June 28 at Malahide in Dublin, Ireland.
(Star Sports inputs)