Former India cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar feels it is the end of the road for India wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik after BCCI did not pick him for the upcoming ODI, T20I series against Australia. It came as a huge shock for Karthik’s believers that the MSK Prasad-led BCCI selection committee did not get him on board. Karthik has been in good form in the matches he played recently, hence it was surprising to see BCCI opting for young Rishabh Pant over the experienced Dinesh Karthik. “His fans will feel sorry because with the opportunity he has got, he has done as well as he could but I feel with this selection or non-selection of Karthik, India have told everyone that we look at Karthik as a T20 batsman and his 50-over future is over as far as we are concerned,” said Manjrekar in conversation with ESPNCricinfo.
“He has done well in the opportunities he has got, but he has been around for a long time and the selectors are thinking just like me – World Cup, big stage, big match, 50-overs cricket, Dinesh Karthik. Ambati Rayudu by playing that innings in New Zealand when he put India on the track of recovery and got the team to get a big score. Dinesh Karthik hasn’t played that kind of an innings. He has mostly played the role of a finisher. So this is where the numbers are disregarded by the selectors, the captain, the management and they are thinking temperamentally so far what we have seen of Karthik, is he someone who will excite us a 50-overs cricket at World Cup and they have said no and I don’t grudge them for that,” Manjrekar explained.
“Both have got distinct weaknesses in the field with Dhoni keeping wickets. Karthik is actually little better than Pant who is a liability in the field. But because of Pant’s recent exploits, he has given a sort of hope. But I am not a big supporter of Pant as a batsman because he still hasn’t set the stage on fire in 50-overs cricket and so you play him no matter what,” Manjrekar added.