Last time when Virender Sehwag played for India in the Tests was against Australia in 2013. India made 503 with Cheteshwar Pujara scoring 204 and M.Vijay making 167 and securing an innings victory for India. Sehwag failed to contribute much to the team’s total and India dropped him after the test for the rest of the series.
Since then, it has been a constant struggle for him to get back into the Indian team. His last good innings came as a century against England in England’s tour of India in 2013. But now at 35, Sehwag doesn’t have age on his side. Also, his slowing reflexes and fading eyesight too have started to cause him problems. The pile of scores has run dry even in the domestic arena. This was evident from his current Vijay Hazare tournament, 25 runs from 2 matches played.
His franchise Delhi Daredevils decided not to retain him or bid for him in the recently-held IPL players auction. Sehwag was finally brought by the Kings XI Punjab franchise for a low price of Rs. 3.2 crore. Virender Sehwag mentioned in a recent interview that he feels that he still has 2-3 years of international cricket in him.
To make a comeback into the Indian team, Sehwag must show some consistency in scoring runs. IPL has presented him with the best chance of doing that. Now he has no pressure of being an icon player for Delhi anymore, and will be able to play with more freedom.
Virender Sehwag needs to return to the opening slot for success. The position at which he made most of his runs and both his triple centuries in the Test matches, and the double hundred in the ODI vs West Indies.
India is still struggling to find a good opening pair in Tests and have been experimenting with M.Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan and Ajinkya Rahane. India’s next big assignment is the 5 Test Series against England in the latter’s homeground, and then, the 4 Test Series vs Australia on Australian soil. India doesn’t have fond memories of those tours in 2011. India suffered whitewashes in both the series with most of the batsmen failing to score. The result of those disastrous twin tours were the retirements of Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman. The failures on those tours are also a big blot on M.S.Dhoni’s chequered captaincy career.
Virender Sehwag struggled on both the tours with issues with his eyesight and slow reflexes. To come back into the team, he has to show that his reflexes are still in perfect shape. Also he needs to score big in the upcoming IPL for him to secure a chance to go to the team’s England tour.
The Nawab of Najafgarh definitely deserves a second chance to play for the country and entertain us once again. Do you feel the same? Let us know via the comment boxes below.
– By Jatin Sharma