Chandigarh: India’s new batting sensation Shikhar Dhawan is looking to maintain his blistering form in the upcoming Champions League T20.
Ever since his sensational international debut, Dhawan has been in rollicking form as he was adjudged the Man of the Series in Champions Trophy in England and the Delhi batsman said he would look to play smart cricket in future.
“Once you score big runs at the start of your international career, you get really confident because that is one part which is really tough as every player is nervous at the start of the career,” said Dhawan, who has been appointed captain of Sunrisers Hyderabad, one of the four teams in the Champions League T20 qualifiers here.
“It’s good that I started off really well and I just want to continue the same form and play smart cricket so that I can be consistent. God has been kind and things have been going on really well for me… I would like to continue that way in future too.”
The 27-year-old left-handed batsman took over the reins of Hyderabad from regular captain Kumar Sangakkara, who opted to play for Sri Lankan outfit Kandurata Maroons.
Dhawan said: “It is a new challenge for me and I am really looking forward to it. I have been captain for my Delhi team. It’s a great feeling to be captaining the Sunrisers team, it’s really an honour for me and I am looking forward to it.”
Every captain has a distinctive style of leadership and when asked about his method of captaincy, Dhawan said: “I am cool and aggressive; aggressive from inside and cool from outside.”
“I want my team to enjoy in the middle, love that intensity, we have already got that, so it’s good.”
Besides Hyderabad and the Maroons, the other two teams are Otago Volts from New Zealand and Faisalabad Wolves from Pakistan.
Coach Tom Moody said it wasn’t difficult to pick Dhawan as captain after Sangakkara expressed his unavailability. “It wasn’t difficult. We are fortunate as a franchise to have capable leaders within the group, both domestic and international ones.
“We have international players like Darren Sammy, Cameron White and Sangakkara, when he was with us. We are spoilt for choice with regards to that. With Sangakkara unavailable, this is an important stepping stone for us with regards to our relationship with Shikhar built for the future.
“His cricketing skills are unquestionable. He has shown what he is capable of doing. He has got natural leadership skills and it’s an area he has shown interest in developing.”
Young Indian cricketers such as Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma are already captaining Royal Challengers Bangalore and Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League.
Asked about this young brigade of captains, Dhawan said: “I guess we guys have been playing IPL for long. Then you get mature when you play for so long.
“With time, you get new responsibilities and I feel change is good… Its good time for us and good time for me to be the captain and lead from the front.”