IND vs BAN 2022-23, 2nd ODI: 'Always enjoy playing sweep shots' - Shikhar Dhawan
IND vs BAN 2022-23: India will look to reset and restart against Bangladesh in the second Dhaka ODI on Wednesday after losing the opener. Meanwhile, Shikhar Dhawan is emphasised playing the sweep shots.
Battling indifferent form, veteran India opener Shikhar Dhawan is working on his sweep shot and reverse hit to prepare for the ICC World Cup at home next year. Having scored just one half-century in his last nine innings, the 37-year-old left-hander faces the heat in the build-up to the One-Day International (ODI) showpiece. Shubman Gill, who is not part of the series in Bangladesh, has emerged as a strong contender to open alongside skipper Rohit Sharma in the CWC. Team India head coach Rahul Dravid had a special session with him ahead of the second ODI at the Shere Bangla National Stadium in Dhaka on Wednesday.
"It's good to practice more. These shots will come in handy in these conditions. Those shots will be helpful even in the World Cup in India, where spinners will make an impact. I always enjoy playing them. It's good to practice more in these conditions," Dhawan said on the eve of India's must-win game.
Dhawan's struggles in the recent past have hurt India in the PowerPlay (PP). In the first ODI against Bangladesh, Dhawan scored seven from 17 balls, as Indian batters were bundled out for 186 in 41.2 overs. "This is not the first time we have lost the first game in a series. It is quite normal. We know how to bounce back from these situations. We're very, very confident," said Dhawan.
Bangladesh was 136/9 in 39.3 overs in its small chase of 187, but Mehidy Hasan and Mustafizur Rahman eked out an improbable win with an unbroken 51-run stand for the last wicket. "It doesn't happen very often. They played well. Of course, Bangladesh plays excellent cricket. We have analysed where we need to improve. Surely, we will create more impact in the coming games. We are very positive and in a good space. We are looking forward to it," Dhawan said.
Talking about the positives, Dhawan said Washington Sundar could be groomed to become a "great" all-rounder for India. Sundar may have drawn flak for his sloppy fielding, but he has impressed, especially in the ODI series against New Zealand, where he scored his maiden half-century and also made a quick-fire 37 not out batting lower down the order.
"He [Sundar] has been performing well since he returned. Even in New Zealand, he had a fantastic knock and bowled well. He's a perfect all-rounder, quite an impactful off-spinner and lower-order batter. I'm sure the more matches he plays, he will get experienced. He already had a very stable mindset. I'm sure he'll do great in the cricket world and for us," reckoned Dhawan.
Dhawan said about India's rivalry with Bangladesh: "The rivalry is always there with any team, but with Bangladesh, they are quite emotional. They enjoy and play with great intensity. It's good fun, makes us more intense, and keeps us on our toes. It brings the best out of us."
(With inputs from PTI)