Could India’s fate at the World Cup be different had Shikhar Dhawan been fit to play the semifinal? Probably yes, had the opening batsman not been forced to return home after picking a thumb injury during his century against Australia. Nevertheless, almost exactly a month after being ruled out of the quadrennial event, the southpaw has picked up the bat again, and the first thing he did was not face the young bowlers at the nets but perform the ‘Bottle Cap Challenge.’ The 33-year-old performed the modified version of the challenge by Yuvraj Singh like a boss and his delight was there for everyone to see.
Shikhar, dressed in a T-shirt and shorts, posted the video from the National Cricket Academy nets in Bengaluru. Unlike Yuvraj, who hit a straight lofted hit, the swashbuckling batsman’s drive was directed towards mid-off as he hit the tennis ball right to the top of the bottle to knock it off.
This might not be a hundred, but his reaction was almost like twirling his moustache or spreading his arms in his trademark style, this time sending out a mighty fist pump to express his delight.
Netizens exulted over ‘Gabbar’s return and commented, ‘Gabbar is back’.
Yuvraj too was impressed, and wrote, "Shot eh jatt ji."
Yuvraj had performed the challenge, which involves knocking the bottle off with a rounhouse kick, on July 8 without following the real rules, since it requires only the bottle cap to drop and not the bottle. However, it’s almost impossible for the bottle to stand its ground with the force of a cricket shot.
Yuvi had also challenged his fellow southpaws like Brian Lara and Chris Gayle while asking Sachin Tendulkar to do so left-handed. It’d be interesting to see when the cricket superstars share their version.
Meanwhile, India’s team for the West Indies tour is set to be announced on Friday. The BCCI will obviously not just go by this video and have other assessments in place to decide if Shikhar will be named in the squad.