Shikhar Dhawan not sweating over format switch ahead of World Cup
Shikhar Dhawan feels changing mindset takes a minute when it comes to format change. (AFP Image)

He is known as the man for India at ICC events. Every time the Indian team plays an ICC tournament, Shikhar Dhawan undoubtedly steals the show with quality knocks at the top of the innings. And now, as India gear up to challenge the top teams across the world in an attempt to lift the coveted 2019 World Cup, Dhawan’s role at the top of the order will be all the more crucial.

But then, would it be a deterrent that while he opens with Rohit Sharma in Indian colours, Dhawan has been opening with Prithvi Shaw over the past month and a half in the Indian Premier League for Delhi Capitals? For the opener, it doesn’t really matter.

If you play with someone for years, you’ll know him inside out. With Rohit, there’s nothing special that we do. It’s just the mindset. Even if I bat with Prithvi, the game remains the same. If one person gets going, the other man plays a supporting role,” Dhawan told IANS.

Asked if the pressure of having had a good run in ICC events can sometimes get to a player, Dhawan’s reply was crisp.

“Conscious about what? This is my daily job. I make sure my basics are taken care of and I have a clear mind. Sometimes you make runs, sometimes you don’t. But I always keep calm and look at the areas where I need to work on and then I go and give it my best shot. I don’t believe in worrying too much,” the left-hander explained.

Dhawan doesn’t worry much as he managed to quietly hit 521 runs in 16 games for Delhi Capitals with five fifties at the top of the innings, one of the reasons behind DC’s success this season. And Dhawan feels the IPL form will keep him in a good stead for the showpiece event. He also feels that switching from the T20 format to the 50-over format will be no big task.

“It has been very positive because if you do well, you gain in momentum. Apart from the IPL, I also had a good series with Australia. There is no issue in changing the format as it is all about the mindset and changing that takes a minute. We are ready for any challenge that comes our way in the World Cup,” he said.

This is the first time that the Indian bowlers are also being spoken about as many feel that this is the best bowling firepower India have possessed in a long time. Dhawan feels that praise is well deserved.

“We have a very strong bowling attack in Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Mohammed Shami. This apart, we also have a good bowler in Hardik Pandya. This is a balanced bowling unit and that will definitely help the team. Bumrah is the no.1 bowler at present and then we also have quality spinners. I feel that this team is very well balanced,” he said.

Dhawan also reckons the experience of Virat Kohli, MS Dhoni, Rohit and himself would also help the team in crunch situations. “When you go into a big ticket tournament, along with talent you also need experience and I feel that this team has the perfect mix with Kohli, Dhoni, Rohit and me being there to guide the youngsters whenever required,” he said.