Shikhar Dhawan under pressure to keep his spot in ODIs — Gautam Gambhir

K. L. Rahul is in “unbelievable form” and could threaten to edge out Dhawan for the opener’s slot, says Gambhir.

K. L. Rahul has three half-centuries and a century in his last seven innings in limited-overs internationals.   -  K. R. Deepak

Former India opener Gautam Gambhir believes Shikhar Dhawan would be under pressure to keep his place as opener in the Indian team since K. L. Rahul is batting well.

Dhawan, making a comeback to the team after two months due to a knee injury, scratched his way to a 30-ball-32 while Rahul struck a 32-ball 45 as India chased down a modest target of 143 in the second T20 against Sri Lanka in Indore on Tuesday.

White-ball vice-captain and opener Rohit Sharma is not playing this series as he has taken a short break. “Rahul is in unbelievable form. It amazes me every time I see Rahul bat, that, why didn’t he play the same way in Test cricket? With the kind of quality he possesses, he is someone who can get you a 50-ball 100 in Test cricket as well. The kind of shots he has is superb,” Gambhir said during a post-match show for host broadcaster Star Sports.

Runs under the belt

Gambhir indirectly suggested Rahul was better suited to partner Rohit. “Shikhar Dhawan looked rusty but it’s a good thing that he got some runs under his belt. It will help him when he walks out to bat in the next game. Had he got out early, the pressure would have been more,” Gambhir said.

When asked if playing for Delhi Capitals will also put Dhawan under much pressure, Gambhir replied, “You can’t compare IPL to international cricket. When you’re playing for Delhi Capitals, you know there’s no one waiting for the opportunity, but when you’re playing for the country and you know there’s someone who’s actually can replace you, there’ll always be pressure. And today, it was shown who’s in better form.”