Dinesh Karthik made a strong case for a middle-order slot with a stylish 94 off 77 balls against Bangladesh in the second warm-up tie at Kenninton Oval on Tuesday. Karthik showed composure during his innings under mostly overcast conditions and showed that he can hit the ball when required. Pleased with his innings, Indian skipper Virat Kohli hinted at the possibility of including him in the playing XI against Pakistan on June 4. India will start their campaign in the ICC Champions trophy with the match against the arch-rivals and play Sri Lanka on June 8 and South Africa on June 11.
"Both games we got what we wanted. Batsmen got runs, bowlers were outstanding as well. When the cloud cover comes in, it's difficult for the batsmen," Kohli said after the 240 -run victory over their sub-continent rivals.
This was India's second win in as many practice matches, the first coming against Bangladesh on Sunday.
India scored a mammoth 324/7 and left Bangladesh in tatters by bowling thme out for a lowly 84 with more than 25 overs to spare.
Kohli added, "We back Hardik (Pandya) and Kedar (Jadhav) to do the job for us down the order. Dinesh is an outstanding player, we just wanted to give him a longer run. We have ticked all the boxes in these games."
Karthik got out for a duck in the first warm-up match against New Zealand but made full use of the opportunity in the second game. His first boundary was a cut shot off Taskin followed by a superb straight drive off Mustafizur. He was severe on off-spinner Mossadek Hossain and left- arm spinner Sunzamul Islam, cutting and pulling anything that was short. Sunzamul was pulled for a four and a six in one of the overs and he also ran the singles well.
The middle order batsman is a replacement player for Manish Pandey and came into the squad after a good domestic season and a superb Indian Premier League- scoring 361 runs in 14 matches with an average of 36.10.
(With PTI inputs)