It is a new challenge and we are waiting for it: Dhawan on Sri Lanka tour

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27 Jun 2021 | 12:16 PM
authorcricket.com staff

It is a new challenge and we are waiting for it: Dhawan on Sri Lanka tour

Shikhar Dhawan expresses his opinion on a young Indian squad ready to take on Sri Lankan team

Shikhar Dhawan, India's captain for the limited-overs tour of Sri Lanka, reckons the upcoming series will be a challenge but also an opportunity for the fringe players to show their mettle and push for a regular spot in the main team. 

"This is a very good team. There is positivity, confidence in our team and everybody is confident that we will do well. There is lot of excitement," Dhawan said at the virtual pre-departure press conference on Sunday in the presence of head coach Rahul Dravid.

"It is a new challenge but at the same time it is a great opportunity for all of us to show our talent. Everybody is waiting (for the tour to begin). 13-14 days have passed since we are in quarantine, so the players are waiting when we can hit the ground and we have 10-12 days for preparation."

In the absence of regular skipper Virat Kohli and the main side, who are currently touring England, Dhawan will lead a second-string Indian team in the limited-overs series against Sri Lanka next month. Pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar will be his deputy.

"It is a great honour for me to captain India. Also working with Rahul bhai. I have played under his coaching when I was captaining India A in Bangladesh. We sync with each other. We want an environment in which boys can express themselves, be themselves. That is how we will get the best out of them."

India are scheduled to clash with Sri Lanka in three One-day Internationals and as many Twenty20 matches on the tour that will begin on July 13 and conclude on July 25 at the R Premadasa International Cricket Stadium in Colombo.

The Indian cricket Board named a 20-member squad that has all-rounder Hardik Pandya and spin duo of Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal.

Young guns like Devdutt Padikkal and Prithvi Shaw expectedly feature in the squad that also has two wicket-keeper batsmen in young Ishan Kishan and Sanju Samson.

Talking about the composition of the side, Dhawan said: "The boys are doing smart work and are looking forward to these matches. The players have already performed well, be it in the IPL.

"The team is a nice blend of experience and youth," said the left-handed opener, who is captaining India for the first-time.

The left-hander also said it is important for the top-order to bat long in Sri Lanka.

"It is important for the top-order to stay long at the crease over there. Give good start in first six overs in T20 and build long innings from there. Of course, we will play according to the demands of the situation. Boys are looking to perform their roles."

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India tour of Sri Lanka, 2021IndiaShikhar DhawanYuzvendra ChahalHardik PandyaKrunal PandyaSanju SamsonIshan Kishan

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