India Test opener Mayank Agarwal could be in line for his ODI debut after reports of him replacing Shikhar Dhawan in India’s 15-member ODI squad for the three match ODI series against West Indies emerged on Tuesday. Dhawan was ruled out of the West Indies T20Is after receiving a nasty cut on his knee during the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy and it appears that the left-hander is unlikely to recover in time for the ODIs beginning Sunday in Chennai, in which case Agarwal is a likely to receive the nod.
“The selection committee has recommended Mayank’s name as Shikhar’s replacement after consultation with the team management. Dhawan is currently undergoing rehabilitation,” a senior BCCI source told PTI.
Agarwal, currently playing the Ranji Trophy for his state team Karnataka is expected to join the team in Chennai in the build-up to the series opener. The decision has been made keeping in mind Agarwal’s stellar form in Tests, where he has scored 872 runs from nine matches at an impressive average of 67.07. Agarwal racked up 340 runs in three Tests against South Africa with a double century and a hundred and carried it in the two Test-series against Bangladesh where he peeled off another double ton.
“Mayank along with Prithvi Shaw and Shubman Gill were the three choices that selection committee had. But team management believes that Mayank’s List A record of 50 plus average and 100 plus strike rate with 13 hundreds is good enough to try him out in this format,” the source added. “It is time that we create a pool of openers and look at all the potential options who could partner Rohit.”
Earlier this year, Agarwal was called in as a replacement for Vijay Shankar in India’s World Cup squad but did not get a game. A toe injury had ruled Shankar out, after which Agarwal joined the team. In the IPL earlier this year, Agarwal had scored 332 runs for Kings XI Punjab, emerging as their third-highest run-getter. He has also been good for Karnataka averaging 47.95 in 44 List A games.