Shikhar Dhawan got a lot of attention after his first game, when he made the fastest hundred in the history of Test cricket. In 2013, when India played Australia in Mohali, Dhawan opened the innings with Murali Vijay. At the time, he was in his tenth year of First-Class cricket, and his stroke play and elegance wowed the crowd.
Dhawan’s rise to fame began when he was only 19 years old and did well in the Under 19 World Cup in 2003–2004. He ended the series with 505 runs and an average of more than 84, which was enough to make him Player of the Series. From then on, he became more interested in ICC competitions. Since then, the left-hander did well in every ICC event he played in, including the Champions Trophy in 2013, the World Cup in 2015, the Champions Trophy in 2017, and the World Cup in 2019, before an injury forced him to miss the tournament in England.
But Dhawan’s senior career didn’t get off to a great start because Gautam Gambhir and Virender Sehwag, both of whom play for Delhi, destroyed opponents as an opening pair. The stars fell into place for Dhawan, though, when the two regular openers suddenly lost their form, and the selectors had no choice but to give him a shot. Dhawan had already scored 5679 runs in First Class cricket when he played against Australia. He got off to a great start by hitting 187 runs off of 174 balls. This set the tone for India’s win. Since then, Dhawan and Rohit Sharma, who opens with him in ODIs, have been unstoppable.
The top five batting performances by Shikhar Dhawan in ICC events such as last champions trophy are:
- 114 (94), India against South Africa (ICC Champions Trophy, June 2013, Cardiff)
Dhawan got his first hundred in the first game of the 2013 CT.
South Africa, one of the favorites to win the whole thing, was India’s first opponent in the Champions Trophy. Even though Dhawan did poorly in the preseason games, he was moved up to start with Rohit Sharma.
The three seamers for the Proteas, Morne Morkel, Lonwabo Tsotsobe, and Rory Klienveldt, were up against a fierce southpaw from Delhi. India got to 100 runs in just over 10 overs thanks to its first three batters.
- 102 (107) against WI (ICC Champions Trophy, June 2013, Kensington Oval)
Dhawan had just hit a hundred in India’s first Champions Trophy game against the Proteas, and he was excited to keep going in India’s second game against the West Indies. In order to reach their goal of 234 runs, Dhawan and Sharma put together another century-run partnership after Jadeja’s five wickets slowed down the WI’s effort.
On a slow pitch, the Windies were not easy to beat with Sunil Narine on their side, but the Indian openers were patient. India needed to win by eight wickets, so when Rohit was out with the score at 101, the SRH opener stepped up as the team’s anchor. He was still unbeaten with 102 runs, and Karthik, who also had 50 runs, was next to him.
- 73 (76) against Pak (ICC ODI World Cup, February 2015, Adelaide)
Dhawan, along with Rohit and Kohli, was a big reason why India beat Pakistan in Adelaide.
India’s match against Pakistan in Adelaide was the most anticipated match in the group stage of the World Cup. India has never lost to Pakistan in the World Cup, and Dhawan and his team were determined to keep it that way. With Rohit Sharma leaving early, Virat Kohli and Shikhar Dhawan put together 129 runs to help India’s batting lineup get off to a good start.
Later, Dhawan hit a very important fifty that made it possible for India to get a good score. The blow came as the public and the press were criticizing the southpaw’s choice. And he showed that he can still do well even when things are very hard.
The second wicket partnership made it possible for Kohli and Suresh Raina to get India to 300 runs. Dhawan’s early work is sometimes forgotten because he scored less than one run per ball. On a more personal level, though, it gave him the confidence he needed to go further in the tournament.
- 137 (146) vs South Africa (ICC World Cup, February 2015, Melbourne)
His best game at the 2015 World Cup was against the Proteas.
After Rohit Sharma was run out in the first over of the game, Dhawan was put in charge of leading India’s batting lineup again. Sure enough, that’s what he did.
He was pursued by the four Proteas pace bowlers, Steyn, Morkel, Parnell, and Philander, who were all aware of his struggles with the short ball. But, Dhawan remained at the bowling crease and prepared a last assault with Kohli.
He wanted to be India’s main player, and it took him 70 balls to get to 50. After Kohli was out, Ajinkya Rahane came in and kept the score going, making it easy for Shikhar Dhawan to settle in.
Once Dhawan got going, he couldn’t be stopped. He batted through the Proteas spinners and scored 137. (his highest ODI total to date). When he was finally taken out in the 44th over, India was well on its way to getting another score of 300 or more.
The bowler kept working, and India won by a huge margin of 130 runs.
- 100 (85) vs Ireland (ICC World Cup, March 2015, Hamilton)
India had already qualified for the World Cup by the time they played Ireland in 2015. The 75 by Niall O’Brien gave the Irish the idea to go for 260 to win. Dhawan and Rohit Sharma, who opened with him, stepped up in the chase with their usual aggressiveness. In the first wicket partnership, they scored 174 runs, which pretty much took Ireland out of the running.
Dhawan’s 50 took 54 balls to reach because Rohit was ahead of him in the order. Dhawan got to his second fifty in just 31 balls, and four of the five sixes he hit happened after the halfway point. He then went on a rant about how bad the Irish bowlers were.