Rohit Sharma explains why Dinesh Karthik was sent ahead of Rishabh Pant in second T20I against Australia

Dinesh Karthik smashed a six and a four in the last over to register exciting win over the defending champions.

Aakash SrivastavaAuthor

Updated - 24 September 2022 12:19 PM

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Team India levelled the three-match T20I series against Australia by clinching the second match of the series on September 23 (Friday) at Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium, in Nagpur.

After the match was reduced to eight overs, Aaron Finch (31 off 15) and Mathew Wade (43 off 20) propelled the defending champions to 90/5, while Indian off-spinner Axar Patel dismissed two wickets while being miserly with the ball.

In response, Rohit Sharma & Co. had a flying start to their innings as the openers quickly added 39-runs for the first wicket before KL Rahul departed in the third over. While Indian skipper Rohit Sharma held the fort from one end, batters at the other end kept on changing as Adam Zampa rattled India's middle order.

However, the Indian captain took India to the winning line before veteran finisher Dinesh Karthik rose to the occasion and smashed a six and a four in the last over to register an exciting win over the defending champions. Notably, Karthik has made a remarkable comeback on the international stage after putting up a consistent show in this year's IPL.

While Karthik was sent to finish things off over regular wicket-keeper batter Rishabh Pant, the Hitman admitted after the match that Karthik will be bestowing the responsibility of the finisher for Men in Blue in the upcoming ICC Men's T20 World Cup in Australia, starting next month.

During the post-match presentation, Rohit said, "I was confused whether to have Rishabh Pant or Dinesh Karthik to play that final over of Daniel Sams, but in the end, I asked to send Dinesh Karthik as he will playing finishing role for us in T20 World Cup." 

Notably, Karthik was Team India's first choice in the recently concluded Asia Cup 2022 and featured in the match against Pakistan in their tournament opener, before left-handed all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja was ruled out due to injury, paving the way for another left-handed batter Rishabh Pant in the squad.

The turn of events led to Karthik warming up the benches for the next few matches. India, who entered the Asia Cup as the defending champions were crashed out of the continental tournament after suffering back-to-back defeats against Pakistan and Sri Lanka in the Super-4 stage.

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