T20 World Cup 2021: Vaughan believes Dhoni would have convinced Kohli and Shastri to include Shardul in squad

Shardul Thakur | GETTY

India made only one change in their 2021 T20 World Cup squad and included all-rounder Shardul Thakur in place of Akshar Patel. Shardul was named in the reserve players list initially, but his performance in the IPL 2021 got him a spot in the main squad.

Former England captain Michael Vaughan praised Shardul and said he reminds him of the England great Ian Botham. The all-rounder was part of the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) franchise in the IPL 2021 and he was their leading wicket-taker with 21 scalps.

Vaughan believes Team India mentor MS Dhoni, who was captain of CSK, has a role to play in including Shardul into the main squad for the T20 World Cup. “Last week I was with Lord Botham and he is a true lord. Thakur is very similar to Ian Botham. He gets the ball in his hands and makes things happen. He did it in the Test series, he did it in the IPL,” he said on Cricbuzz.

The ex-cricketer further added, “The mentor of the Indian T20 team is behind the stumps. He was captaining him. He was probably on the phone with Virat and Ravi talking about him, saying ‘come on’. He (Shardul) has that ability to make things happen.”

Vaughan pointed out Shardul’s ability to deceive the batters with his variations which worked well for him and make the speedster not an easy bowler to target.

“He must have a very good deception of pace because you watch him and it’s like ‘yeah, it’s pretty normal. But he has that deception like Ashwin. He bowls and it goes through quickly, bowls cross-seam and goes through quickly. He has that ability to surprise the batter and those subtle variations that we can’t pick up,” he said.