India seamer Shardul Thakur, who on Friday smashed unbeaten 22 off 8 balls against Sri Lanka in the third and final T20I, believes that he has the ability to contribute with the bat as well.
Thakur, who also returned figures of 2 for 19, became the Man of the Match on Friday.
At a point in the match, India were 164 for 6 and were looking to be bundled out, but Thakur’s cameo along with Manish Pandey’s 31* off 18 balls took Men in Blue to 201 in 20 overs. In reply, Sri Lanka were bowled out for 123, thus losing the match by 78 runs.
However, this was not the first time Thakur gave the glimpse of his batting prowess. Last month, he played a match-winning knock of 17 runs off 6 balls in the 3rd ODI against the West Indies which helped India chase down an imposing 316 even after losing skipper Virat Kohli.
“I believe I have the ability with the bat and I have been practicing hard,” Thakur said in the post-match presentation ceremony as quoted by IANS.
“If I can contribute at number eight, it is always crucial for the team,” he said.
Defending the 202-run target, Thakur was impressive with the ball too. The right-arm pacer generated vicious swing to trap the Lankan batsmen.
Talking about his bowling, Thakur said, “With regard to my action, I can bowl outswingers, so the focus was to swing the ball early.”