Former India opener Virender Sehwag believes Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) batsman Devdutt Padikkal still has a chance of making it to India's T20 World Cup squad if he does well in the remaining 7-8 matches in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021.
Sehwag named the four batsmen he would be intently watching during the IPL and named Padikkal as his favourite among the four. “My first choice will be Ishan Kishan followed by Devdutt Padikkal, KL Rahul and Sanju Samson. These four I will be intently watching. I have loved Devdutt's batting and if I have to pick one amongst the four, he is my man,” Sehwag told PTI
“Who knows, if he does well, he might be drafted in as that Indian top-order for the T20 World Cup,” he added.
Padikkal had an excellent debut season last year, in which he scored 473 runs from 15 matches, followed that up with impressive performances at the domestic circuit and also earned his maiden India call-up for the tour of Sri Lanka.
He did not fare particularly well in the tough conditions in Colombo in his two T20I matches, but Sehwag believes that there can still be changes to the squad, based on IPL performances.In the first half of the tournament, he scored an excellent century against Rajasthan Royals (RR) and overall, has managed 195 runs from six innings, striking in excess of 152.
"100%. We have around seven matches minimum left for the teams. That means you still have a platform to perform and those who are on the fringes could still impress the Indian selectors who would be watching the tournament closely. "Since ICC allows a window to change teams, I will not be surprised if there are some changes in the original squad," Sehwag, who scored 394 runs from 19 T20Is at a strike-rate of 145.38, said.
The second half of the IPL 2021 is set to kick start later today (September 19) with Mumbai Indians (MI) taking on Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in Dubai.
Padikkal and RCB are however in action on Monday (September 20), when they take on Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in Abu Dhabi.