Shikhar Dhawan, along with Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli, literally ruled world cricket as one of the most fearsome top three. The numbers were so great that India’s middle order seldom got to even bat. Fast forward to 2023, Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma are still part of the team, but Shikhar Dhawan isn’t.
What happened? Here are some numbers that might help you reason with the decision of the selectors and management.
Shikhar Dhawan ODI Career
- Innings: 167
- Runs: 6793
- Strike Rate: 91.35
- Average: 44.11
- 50s: 39
- 100s: 17
- Best: 143
A strike rate of over 90 with an average of 44.11 – Dhawan’s career as an opener is a decorated one. With 17 100s and 39 50s against his name, he will go down as one of the best to ever take the field.
Shikhar Dhawan in 2022
- Innings: 22
- Runs: 688
- Strike Rate: 74.21
- Average: 34.40
- 50s: 6
- 100s: 0
- Best: 97
Come 2022, the 50-over game, thanks to T20 cricket, evolved much faster than anyone ever thought. As an opener one is now expected to push for fiery and strong starts, which for the most part, asks the batter to play at a strike rate of over 100.
Dhawan played 22 games in 2022 at a strike rate of 74.21, 15 points lower than his career average. His batting average dropped down to 34, again 10 less than his career average. No three-figure score to show for did not help his case either.
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Average and no 100 for once could have been ignored, but it was his strike rate that would have been the ultimate reason for the decision taken. His successor, Shubman Gill, for that case, plays at a strike rate of close to 110. The decision, owing to Dhawan’s strike rate was clear. The fact that the team was just coming in after losing the T20 World Cup did not help his case either.
Gill has now come into his own, smacking 100s for fun. While it looks like it is all over for Dhawan at the highest level , there is no doubt that he went down as an absolute legend of the game.