While Dinesh Karthik has returned to the Indian team after having a stunning Indian Premier League (IPL), another veteran domestic cricketer, Dhawal Kulkarni hopes to return to the national team again. However, he has played in the Ranji Trophy quarterfinal and did well by breaking the back of Uttarakhand’s top order to set up Mumbai’s record win in the quarterfinal as well.
“This was the first year that I didn’t get picked for the IPL. It was a bit of a setback for me, so I took up commentary to be occupied mentally. And it was good fun,” Kulkarni told Sportstar “There was not too much to do besides sitting at home and working on fitness. Since the grounds in Mumbai were occupied for IPL practice, we couldn’t really do skills training, so I thought of trying out something new. At the same time, whenever there was a break for IPL teams, I would train with the Mumbai boys.”
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However, he went unsold in the IPL auction for the first time as well. Apart from taking 11 wickets in four matches, he has the ability to strike regularly. Moreover, he has been mentoring newcomers Mohit Avasthi and Siddharth Raut as well. Dhawal Kulkarni, who last played for India in October 2016, hoped that his hard work would not go unnoticed.
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“When I was young, I always had Ajit (Agarkar) and Zaheer (Khan) to help me become a better bowler, a better cricketer and a better individual,” Dhawal said. “I am just passing on what I learnt from them to the new bowlers, they are extremely talented. And with Tushar (Deshpande) coming in now, it’s become a little bit easier since he is a seasoned bowler now. Domestic cricket has always been up there for me. I am where I am is primarily due to Mumbai cricket. Since I still feel I can make a comeback for India, I know that performing for Mumbai is paramount. If I can continue to do that and help Mumbai win the Ranji Trophy, it can benefit me as well,” Dhawal Kulkarni signed off.