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Standing in the slip will be an issue for Shikhar Dhawan, says India fielding coach R Sridhar

Dhawan is with the team and they are hoping for him to get fit in time for the crucial games.

Shikhar Dhawan
Shikhar Dhawan. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Team India is desperately waiting to see their star opener Shikhar Dhawan regain fitness in the ongoing World Cup. The opener is currently sidelined with a thumb injury that he sustained during the game against Australia. Dhawan had received a nasty blow on his left thumb from a Pat Cummins bouncer, he played through the pain barrier to score a sublime century. He, however, had not come out to the field at all.

Scans later revealed that he had suffered a hairline fracture. It is under plaster now and will take at least two weeks to recover and might need even longer to be match fit. But the Indian team management is not ready to give up on the left-hander and the reasons are obvious. Dhawan is one of the best openers in the world at the moment and will be pivotal to India‘s chances in the World Cup. His performance in ICC tournaments is stunning and the team will be praying that he recovers quickly.

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But even if he recovers in the coming days, he won’t be able to give his all in the field. India’s fielding coach R Sridhar has said that fielding in the slip region could emerge as a “challenge” for the left-handed batsman after the return. Sridhar said that while Dhawan would not face any issue in throwing the ball, catching and fielding will be a challenge.

“Throwing won’t be a problem, but definitely there will be impact while fielding and catching, especially (since) he’s a slip fielder. If you know, he stands in the slips in the initial phase of the innings, that can be an issue. We’ll test him out with lighter balls first and gradually move on to the cricket ball and see how it goes from there, but, yeah, that will be a challenge,” Sridhar said.

“Once we assess him, probably on 10th or 12th day, we’ll have to look – it’s his bottom hand (left) while batting. It’s not his dominant hand because he’s a (natural) right-hander,” he added.

Kohli on Shikhar Dhawan:

India skipper Virat Kohli, meanwhile, has said that Dhawan is likely to play in the second half of the tournament. He also said that the opener really wants to play.

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“Dhawan is going to be in a plaster for a couple of weeks. After that we will assess where he stands,” Kohli said. “Hopefully, the injury heals quickly and he will be available for the latter half of our league games and semi-finals for sure.

“From that point of view, we want to hold him back, keep him here because he wants to play. I think that kind of mindset will help in healing the injury as well as he really wants to play,” he added.

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