India wicketkeeper batter Dinesh Karthik has picked Harshal Patel over Avesh Khan to play the second T20I against New Zealand on Friday (November 19) in place of Mohammed Siraj, who is doubtful for the second T20I after suffering a hand injury in the first game. Karthik feels Harshal’s change of pace will be a handful on a slow surface in Ranchi. Patel finished with 32 wickets in this edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL). The Pacer used his knuckleball and other variations to good effect in the UAE pitches and reaped rewards. Meanwhile, Siraj leaked 39 runs and only picked up one wicket in the first T20I.
"Both of them are bowling at the best of their careers so far... So you can blindly play any one of them. I personally feel Harshal Patel will be better because obviously, you know, the change of pace in Ranchi [which is a] slightly slow wicket," Dinesh Karthik told Cricbuzz.
On the other hand, Karthik also opined that if India want to go for some extra pace, they can look out for Avesh Khan. The Delhi Capitals pacer picked 24 wickets in the 16 matches in the IPL. The cranked up speeds of 140+kmph consistently.
The India wicketkeeper batter felt Patel is in a good rhythm and needs to be given a chance.
"Avesh Khan is very good with slower ones as well, but Harshal Patel is bowling with such good rhythm that you want to give him the opportunity and see what he brings to the table. But another way you look at it is - you have somebody who bowls 135 in Deepak Chahar and Bhuvi. If you want someone with more pace, then the option is Avesh Khan. It's a good headache to have..." Karthik added
India won the first match by five wickets against New Zealand. Suryakumar Yadav’s 62 runs helped the team chase down the target of 165 with two balls to spare.