Dinesh Karthik: The Ultimate Story Of Perseverance And Determination | Cricket News

“Dreams do come true,” tweeted wicketkeeper-batter Dinesh Karthik on Monday, shortly after he was named in India’s T20 World Cup squad, and rightly so. Leave aside the T20 World Cup squad, if someone would have said in 2021 that Dinesh Karthik would be making a comeback to the national side, no one would have probably believed that. But it is a testament to Karthik’s perseverance, determination, and grit that the 37-year-old veteran has managed to get his name in the India squad that will fly down to Australia to try and win the T20 World Cup for the second time.

It is important to note that Karthik was doing commentary in the UK last year during the World Test Championship final between India and New Zealand at the Ageas Bowl, Southampton. Now, it is not common for a cricketer who still harbours the dream of playing for the country, to do broadcast duties so it is no surprise that fans expected Dinesh Karthik to call time on his career.

However, in several sets of interviews earlier this year, the right-handed batter made it clear that he is still harbouring the dream of playing for the country, and doing the commentary was just a one-off thing for the time being.

Karthik, who had previously led Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League (IPL), was not retained by the franchise ahead of the mega auction this year. So, the biggest challenge for him was to get a franchise and have that role clarity that will help him get noticed by the national selectors. Then, he found the right match in Royal Challengers Bangalore.

The right-handed batter was given the role of a finisher by the franchise and he had that role clarity from the start. And what followed was a dream run in the premier T20 league in the world as he went on to score 330 runs in 16 matches at a strike rate of 183.33.

Midway during the season after playing a match-winning knock of 66* off just 34 balls against Delhi Capitals, Dinesh Karthik spoke to Virat Kohli and it was then that he made his intentions clear of playing the T20 World Cup.

“The big vision is to play for the country. I know there is a World Cup around the corner, and I want to be part of that World Cup desperately and I want to help India cross the line. It has been a long time since India won a multi-nation tournament and I want to be that person who helps India do that. For that you need to do things differently, you need to be aware of so many things and try and be that player who people notice and say hey he is doing something special. Every day, I practice with that intent in my mind. As you grow old, you need to be very fit,” Karthik had told Kohli in a video posted on iplt20.com.

This performance in the IPL paved the way for Karthik to be named in India’s squad for the home series against South Africa, and then he played the subsequent series against Ireland, England, West Indies, and then the Asia Cup. However, the batter was benched for games against Hong Kong, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka in the continental tournament.


When Karthik, who has played 160 international matches for India now, stepped out to the field in the first T20I of a five-match series against South Africa at the Arun Jaitley Stadium in Delhi, he played his first T20I for India after three years. It is important to note that Karthik had played India’s first-ever T20I in 2006 against South Africa and he had starred with the bat, scoring an unbeaten 31.

Whether the wicketkeeper-batter gets the nod ahead of Rishabh Pant in the playing XI for the T20 World Cup or he plays alongside Pant, is a question that can be asked later on, but for now, one must appreciate the grind the veteran Karthik went through and his story is a testament of never giving up.

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