IPL 2013 April 14, 2013

Dhawan awaiting NCA clearance to play in IPL


Shikhar Dhawan, the Sunrisers Hyderabad batsman, is back in India after having spent time with family in Melbourne, and expects to take the field in the IPL "very soon", once he gets clearance from the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bangalore. Tom Moody, the Sunrisers coach, tweeted, "we are hopeful it's within the next 10 days."

Dhawan has missed the first two weeks of the IPL as he's recovering from a fracture he suffered on his hand during the Mohali Test against Australia last month. The game was his debut Test and he shot to fame with a dominating 187, the fastest by a debutant in Test history. Dhawan was ruled out for six weeks after sustaining the injury.

"Hopefully I will be able to take the field soon. After this trip [to Australia], I just have to get the clearance from NCA," Dhawan told ESPNcricinfo. How soon will that be? "Soon, very soon," he added, with a smile.

Dhawan had been tipped for success early in his career but had to wait many years to get an opportunity at the highest level. His ODI debut three years ago was forgettable. However, even with Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir having already cemented their place at the top of India's batting order at the time, especially in Tests, Dhawan never gave up hope of breaking into the side.

"I never thought that way," he said. "I love playing cricket so I was enjoying playing the game whether I played for Delhi or North Zone or even in the IPL, for that matter. All I told myself was I should keep on performing and my chance will come.

"By the grace of God, I got my chance and I could make it count. Even when it comes to [playing for] India, I got a chance [in ODIs] three years ago, so there was no way for me to let my hope fade. And I would think Gautam bhai and Viru bhai have been legends of Indian cricket. They have played for so long. [I thought] if I get an opportunity, I will also make it big."

Dhawan's sensational Test debut has also earned him a new nickname, Gabbar, based on a famous character in Sholay, one of Hindi cinema's biggest blockbusters. "We keep playing pranks on the field and, once, I asked a team-mate, "kitne wicket bache hain, Thakur (How many wickets left, Thakur)", so the nickname has stuck since then."

Dhawan preferred to focus on the present but has an eye on the Champions Trophy later this year in England, an opportunity for him to improve his ODI record. He played down India's biggest challenge of the year, the tour of South Africa, where India have never won a Test series. The presence of Dale Steyn in the Sunrisers camp could be an opportunity for Dhawan to learn a thing or two about Steyn's bowling.

The IPL, however, is not a homework exercise for Dhawan in preparation for the South Africa tour. "When I am playing the IPL, I would like to give my best for the franchise and not think much about anything else. Obviously the South Africa tour is a big tour. Once we get closer to it, we will start preparing accordingly. At the moment, I just want to focus on the IPL."

Dhawan spoke to ESPNcricinfo at the launch of a new range of watches by Tag Heuer

Amol Karhadkar is a correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Prashan on April 20, 2013, 4:11 GMT

    Eager to see you open for SRH. You should help SRH win the IPL 2013. You are no doubt set to be a great batsman for India.

  • Dummy4 on April 19, 2013, 6:47 GMT

    failure in 5 matches can't be big problem while team is winning regularly. Let them play more matches and know them each other well. It will improve winning spirit. In t20 any thing can be happened. last year same team played and lost most of the matches like DD this year. This year they started it nicely even without Dhawan, previous top scorer for DC bt still more matches to be played to qualify for semi. Give more match practices to same 11....... Hope to see both RR an SRH among 4 at the end of league........

  • Dummy4 on April 17, 2013, 9:04 GMT

    Replacing Sanga is foolishness. As per his batting records says he lifts the score and doesn't stay in the wicket. Captaincy is all around performance also up-to the mark of led the team even its a loose or win we can measure. Im seeing most of people who does comment based on seeing the batting. We cant complaint only through batting on surface, pressure & attack from the opponents. Sammy cannot be a captain when it come to World class player among which has to consider effective communication and create team work.

    Sanga and White remain in the position and rest to be altered according to their weakness. Parthiv has to perform else Sanga to place wicket keeping and it may bring a new player in the team. Parthiv has some poor shot selection instead of good skills in batting.

  • Naresh on April 17, 2013, 8:14 GMT

    India has exciting batting talent - there is S. Dhawan,Pujara, Kholi,Karthik, R. Sharma, A Rahane, Vijay - there are others as well. But for me these stand out. Shiktar did very well in that Oz test. Our bowling cupboard is not that richly endowed.

  • Dummy4 on April 16, 2013, 23:21 GMT

    I cannot wait for dhawan to return, he is the only noteworthy indian talent on this team, akshanth reddy has sone aggressiveness but he doesnt last long, patel is not a big hitter & only indian batsmen to have good SR is ashish reddy. I hope SRH management pounce and pay heavy price to get an indian batsmen of some quality in auction as the bowling lineup of steyn, ishant & mishra is good. Im looking forward to the games in chennai as I want to see how sammy & de kock will do. Like gilchrist, sanga being captain makes it hard to drop him for several games even if its in teams best interest. In 4 of 5 games this team has struggled to post score of 135!!!

    Also dhawan should use chris jericho music for his entrance. SAVE US SHIKAR DHAWAN!!!

  • Sreeny on April 16, 2013, 18:58 GMT

    First thing, SRH needs couple of quick changes: Mr Moody and Owners needs to think about this.

    1. Drop sanga and replace with Sammy (Captain/All rounder/Match winner) 2. Drop White and replace with De Cock (As a opener).

    And for the rest of the scrap we can't do anything until Dhawan arrival.

  • Dummy4 on April 16, 2013, 17:02 GMT

    Sanga needs to perform with his bat, and why is he not keeping wickets? I am sure he is much better than Partiv!! and Perera - not every ball is hit on the leg side.. Please drop him too.. what happened to Duminy? he can bat/bowl/field with much more consistency.. when is he back?? I would want to see De kock why is he not given a chance?

    Moody, please dont keep playing with the line up.. settle for one line up and stick to it.. do your homework, stop experimenting on the day!!

  • Peace on April 16, 2013, 16:39 GMT

    @Zahran Fouzi: Last year stats::: For white scored- 479 Runs, @149 Strike Rate with the average of 43+. And Legend(?) Mr. Sanga has scored 200 Runs, @108 strike rate, with the average of 18. This year stats are also White has better figures in all aspects compared to Mr. Sanga who never put impact with his bat in a T20 match. He is a TEST Player and NOT t20 at all and you are backing him?? LOL because of him the entire team is under pressure. Better to replace him with De Cock or Sammy or Duminy. Duminy has average of 83 with strike rate 128 last year and he is on bench because of Mr. Sangakkara. SRH Management should seriously think to replace Sanga with someone. I am desperately waiting SRH playing in Chennai because Sanga cannot play there( Sad to loose Parera at the same time).

  • Raviteja on April 16, 2013, 10:02 GMT

    Darren Sammy in for Sanga and as a captain. Come on! How could the management not make Sammy the captain? He is the captain of the defending champions of WT20! De Kock in for White.

  • Dummy4 on April 16, 2013, 7:20 GMT

    dhavans presence is a must .Also sammy will make a difference.parthiv patel needs play a long innings to be more effective. In these formats we need batsmen who are consitently put up more than 120 strike rate. 100% strike Rate want be good at all. kesav koundinya