India wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik has been in and out of the team for over 17 years now. The Tamil Nadu wicketkeeper-batsman who started his international career in 2004 has been trying to cement his place in the India team, however, for the most part, the presence of MS Dhoni made it nearly impossible for him. Karthik’s career was affected by the inconsistency of opportunities but he always accepted the challenge and continued giving his best. As he celebrates his 36th birthday today (June 1), we look back at his career and list some of the most memorable innings.
29 not out against Bangladesh, Nidahas Trophy final, 2018
While the runs scored in this innings might not actually tell how important an inning this was, Karthik’s unbeaten 29 (8 balls) against Bangladesh in the final of 2018 Nidahas trophy became a highlight of his career. When Karthik walked out to bat in this match, India needed 34 to win off the last 12 bowls. Playing the role of a perfect finisher, Karthik sealed the match and trophy with a last-ball six of Soumya Sarkar’s ball.
129 against Bangladesh, 2007
Dinesh Karthik’s only international century was against Bangladesh in a Test at Mirpur, Dhaka, in 2007. Opening the batting with Wasim Jaffer, Karthik scored 129 runs off 212 deliveries while hitting 16 boundaries. The team posted a huge total of 610 runs in the first innings and went on to win the match by an innings and 239 runs.
93 against Pakistan, 2005
An innings which could have been the first international century of Karthik’s career came to a tragic end after he was bowled out by Danish Kaneria at the score of 93. Nonetheless, this innings played a crucial part in India’s 195 run victory over Pakistan in the second test of Pakistani team’s tour of India in 2005. Young Karthik hit 13 boundaries in this innings.
79 against South Africa, 2010
Karthik highest one-day international score came against South Africa in a match that marked the first ODI double century ever scored. After the quick dismissal of Virendra Sehwag as the first wicket, Karthik came into bat at number 3 and built a partnership with Sachin Tendulkar. Scoring 79 of just 85, he played a crucial role in setting the tone of the match. The match became historic as Tendulkar went on to score an unbeaten 200 of just 147 deliveries. India finished off the match with a 153-run victory after scoring 401 runs in the first inning.
63 against West Indies, 2007
In a low scoring match against the West Indies in 2007, Karthik’s 63 off 87 balls helped India reach a respectable total in the first innings. Helped by Ajit Agarkar’s quick 40 India managed to put 189 runs on the board before the fall of 10th wicket off the second bowl of the 48th over. While it was a low score, Indian bowlers did well and restricted the Caribbean team to 169. Karthik was awarded the man of the match.