If Dinesh Kartik had been born a decade back then he would certainly have been a regular in the Indian team, due to his agility as a wicket keeper and the ability to bat in the top order. However, that was not to be since he is unfortunately a contemporary of M S Dhoni. Although he has played sporadically for India in international cricket, he has had an excellent career in the IPL so far and has been a certainty in the first eleven of all the teams (Delhi Daredevils, Kings XI Punjab and Mumbai Indians) he has represented over the past 6 seasons. In fact it was his stellar batting performances in the IPL this year that forced the Indian selectors to pick him for the Champions Trophy squad as a batsman.
Katik’s role in the team has evolved from the time when he first started off as a wicket keeper-batsman for the Delhi Daredevils in the first edition of the IPL. Although his potential was never in doubt, he was used more as a lower order dasher than a batsman who was supposed to shape the innings from the start. In that regard, he has been used brilliantly by the Mumbai Indians, who have promoted him to the top order at number 3 and Kartik has repaid that faith with excellent performances throughout the last edition of the IPL.
Kartik attracted plenty of attention in the first IPL auction and finally he was sold to the Delhi Daredevils for $525,000. In the auctions that were held in 2011, the Kings XI Punjab went for him quite aggressively and finally acquired him for a whopping $900,000. However, he stayed with the Kings XI side for only one season and switched over to the Mumbai Indians in 2012.
Although Kartik has played plenty of memorable innings in the IPL, his stand out performance remains the 86 he scored off 48 deliveries for the Mumbai Indians against his old team the Delhi Daredevils at the Wankhede Stadium in the IPL this year. He batted at number 3 and took the attack to the Delhi bowlers on his way to belting 14 fours and 2 sixes as the Mumbai Indians scored a mammoth 209. Mumbai won the game by 44 runs and Kartik was correctly adjudged the man of the match.
A cursory glance at the table would reveal the fact that Kartik has been remarkably consistent as regards to his batting throughout the 6 seasons of the IPL, with the last season being the high water mark when he totaled an astonishing 510 runs. Although one might say that his strike rate has dropped considerable since the first edition when he recorded a strike rate of 135.51, it needs to be remembered that he bats higher up the order these days and hence is no longer a batsman who takes risks right from the starts. However, an overall strike rate of almost 124 is nothing to be sniffed at.
Did you know?
Kartik is engaged to be married to Indian squash professional Dipika Pallikal and it was only recently that the couple got engaged. Prior to that he went through an extremely painful divorce with his first wife Neha. Allegedly Neha, whom he had married back in 2007, was having an affair with fellow Tamil Nadi cricketer Murli Vijay and that brought about a closure to the relationship for good.
By Soham Samaddar