Former India off-spinner Harbhajan Singh had a rather explosive remark when he was asked about Dinesh Karthik’s failures with the bat in the T20 World Cup so far.
Team India is currently at the top of the table in Group 2 and are among the top contenders for a place in the semi-final of the T20 World Cup. India are currently at the first position in their group with six points in four matches, and will meet Zimbabwe in their final group game in the tournament on Sunday. India need a win to go through; however, if they lose, the side will have to depend on the results of the other matches in the group to ascertain their fate in the T20 World Cup.
In the ongoing edition, Virat Kohli has stepped up with brilliant performances with the bat; he is currently the highest run-scorer in the 2022 edition with 220 runs in four matches, that include three unbeaten half-centuries. In the match against Bangladesh, KL Rahul returned to run-scoring with a brisk fifty as well, while Suryakumar Yadav has also produced impressive performances.
However, Indian captain Rohit Sharma has been going through an inconsistent patch; he has scored one half-century in the edition so far, but has scores of 15, 4, 15, and 2 in the other four matches. Hardik Pandya, too, had scored an important 40 in the first match but has since faltered in his performances with the bat; he didn’t bat in the second match against Netherlands, and scored 2 and 5 in the last two games for the side.
India wicketkeeper-batter Dinesh Karthik, who is playing ahead of Rishabh Pant, has also failed to make a mark in three innings so far. Former India spinner Harbhajan Singh spoke in detail about the struggling Indian players, and made a rather explosive remark on the same when reminded that Karthik has struggled thrice.
“Dinesh Karthik jab injured hue, tab maine kaha tha Pant ko laaiye. Agar fit hain, toh aap Karthik ko khilaaiye. Aap unko lekar isliye gaye the kyunki vo finisher hai, aur aap Pant ko udhar ballebaazi nahi karaoge jidhar Karthik karte hain (When Karthik was injured, I said that we should bring back Pant. But if he’s fit, Karthik should play becuase you selected him as a finisher. You can’t play Pant in that role),” Harbhajan said on Sports Tak.
Following this, the anchor replied, “Lekin 3 failures ho gaye hain Karthik ke. (But Karthik has had 3 failures now).”
To this, Harbhajan suggested that some other players have also failed but they are protected from criticism because of their high stature.
“Dekhiye, aise kuch aur bhi khilaadi hain jinke failure hue hain. Par unka kad-kaath ucha hai iss vajah se ham unki baat nahi kar rahe. Jidhar Dinesh Karthik ballebaazi karte hain, vo sabse mushkil kaam hota hai. Yuvraj Singh aur MS Dhoni, jitni tareef karo unki kam hain. Unke baad agar kisi pe finisher ki taraf nazar jaati hai toh vo Hardik Pandya hai. Agar Karthik mila hai, toh uska thoda mauka de do. (See. there are other players who have failed too. But there stature is high, so we don’t talk about them. Dinesh Karthik’s batting position is difficult. Yuvraj Singh and MS Dhoni have batted there brilliantly; after them, Hardik Pandya came to the finishing role. Now we have Karthik, we should give him a chance),” said Harbhajan.
“Bande ne badi mehnat ki hai, run bhi banaake aaya hai. Just 3 mauko ke baad ye mat sochiye ki vo flop ho gaya hai. Mauka baraabar ka hina chahiye, agar upar waalo ko backing mil rahi hai toh neeche waalo ko bhi milni chahiye (He has worked hard, he has scored runs. You can’t say he has flopped after three chances. Everyone should have equal opportunities, if top-order players are getting the backing, lower-order players should also receive that),” he further said.