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Rediff.com  » Cricket » Celebrating 38 Years of 'Gabbar' Magic in Team India

Celebrating 38 Years of 'Gabbar' Magic in Team India

By REDIFF CRICKET
December 05, 2023 13:11 IST
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Shikhar Dhawan

Photograph: Kind Courtesy Shikhar Dhawan/Instagram

As Shikhar Dhawan celebrates his 38th birthday this Tuesday, he stands as one of India's premier openers.

Dhawan's last appearance for India was a year ago in an ODI series in Bangladesh, marking the first time in the past 13 years that he commemorates his birthday without the routine of international cricket.

 

Shikhar Dhawan

Dhawan's cricketing narrative took a pivotal turn when he formed a formidable opening partnership with Rohit Sharma during the ICC Champions Trophy in 2013. As Rohit earned the moniker 'Hitman,' Dhawan, with his explosive batting and trademark moustache twirl, affectionately became known as Gabbar.

Despite facing challenges and later being shifted to number 3 in the batting order, Dhawan continued to enamor fans with his flamboyant style. Transitioning exclusively to white-ball cricket after his last Test in 2018, he encountered competition from KL Rahul but has remained a stalwart in the limited-overs format.

Shikhar Dhawan

A key contributor to India's 2013 Champions Trophy victory, Dhawan was honored as the 'Man of the Tournament' for his outstanding performance. His impressive record in ICC tournaments extended to the 2015 World Cup, where he outperformed both Rohit and Virat Kohli, finishing as India's top scorer.

The 2017 ICC Champions Trophy showcased Dhawan in prime form once again, leading the tournament's batting charts. In the 2018 Asia Cup, he played a pivotal role in India's seventh title win, amassing 342 runs in five matches at an average of 68.40.

Now in the twilight of his illustrious 12-year career, Dhawan has taken on the role of a mentor to the next generation of Indian cricketers, sharing his wealth of experience with the budding talents in the cricketing fraternity.

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