Shardul Thakur shines when it counts, ahead of T20 World Cup

Shardul Thakur held his nerve in dramatic style with just seven to defend in the final over of the fourth T20I against New Zealand in Wellington on Friday.

Thakur picked four wickets in the space of six deliveries and was instrumental in India's dramatic Super Over win in Wellington.   -  GETTY IMAGES

Shardul Thakur held his nerve in dramatic style with just seven to defend in the final over of the fourth T20I against New Zealand in Wellington on Friday.

Thakur picked four wickets in the space of six deliveries and although he conceded 27 runs in the three overs before that, it was through his aggressive and disciplined bowling that India was able to tie the match, eventually consigning New Zealand to its second consecutive Super Over defeat of the five-match T20I series.

Thakur's bowling prowess, especially in the death overs, was on display again in the second T20I against Sri Lanka in Indore, where his three for 23 sparkled in India's convincing seven-wicket win. Thakur, bowling the penultimate over in the first innings, removed DM De Silva, I Udana and L Malinga off the second, fifth and sixth deliveries respectively.

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No muck with bat

Earlier in the evening, he had scored 20 off 15 balls to help lift an otherwise struggling India to a competitive 165. Thakur can bat, like he showed in that tight chase in the ODI series decider against the West Indies in Cuttack last year. He hammered 17 off just six balls including two fours and a six as India got over the line with four wickets in hand.

With the T20 World Cup around the corner, Thakur's ability to deal decisive blows with the ball and score runs at crucial stage could very well see him fly to Australia come October.

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