It felt like Axar Patel was motivated to perform, to prove that he might not be the understudy anymore and commands a place in the side. The last 12 months have been the emergence of Axar Patel the batter and he has become an important component in the T20 side, especially and even in the Test matches at home. Having played so many crucial knocks in the games, the injury came at the wrong time for him before the World Cup and had to miss the tournament and he was up and about in the T20 series.
The first three matches didn’t go to plan and might have been the reason for the selectors to prefer Ravindra Jadeja over him and that might have been the motivating factor for Axar to make Australians dance on his tunes in Raipur on Friday, December 1.
Axar first took out the dangerous Travis Head, who has been a cause of headache for the Indian players and fans alike in the last six months or so. After that, Axar understood the pace of the pitch, which was a bit slower than the surfaces in the previous games and used his flight and guile to dismiss Aaron Hardie and Ben McDermott. Axar finished with the figures of 3/16 and India successfully defended a tricky score of 174.
Axar might not have needed to prove anything but he’d be glad with what he did and walked away with the Player of the Match performance. A day later, Axar reacted to the whole situation – a match-winning performance immediately after snub from the next series saying, “Move in silence. Only speak when it’s time to say checkmate.”
Axar will be hoping to end the series on a high with another good performance and may have an outside chance of sneaking into the T20 squad since he is already there for the ODIs.
India’s T20 squad for South Africa series: Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shubman Gill, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Tilak Varma, Suryakumar Yadav (C), Rinku Singh, Shreyas Iyer, Ishan Kishan (wk), Jitesh Sharma (wk), Ravindra Jadeja (VC), Washington Sundar, Ravi Bishnoi, Kuldeep Yadav, Arshdeep Singh, Mohd. Siraj, Mukesh Kumar, Deepak Chahar.
Latest Cricket News