Former Indian opener Aakash Chopra has placed his bets on veteran batsman Shikhar Dhawan to finish as the highest run-scorer of IPL 2022. Dhawan, who was not retained by Delhi Capitals, will ply trade for Punjab Kings. He will join Captain Mayank Agarwal at the top of the batting order and will hope to replicate what he did for the Delhi franchise last year.
Speaking on his YouTube channel, Aakash Chopra also picked Kagiso Rabada as his choice for the Purple Cap. The 44-year-old said:
“Shikhar Dhawan will be the leading run-scorer for Punjab Kings. There is a possibility that he might win the Orange Cap in the process as well. Rabada will be the leading wicket-taker, he might win the Purple Cap as well. Highest strike rate is a close call between Agarwal, Livingstone, and Shahrukh, but I think it’ll be Livingstone. I think they should finish in the top four, they have the team to do so.”
Incidentally, Shikhar Dhawan was Delhi’s highest run-scorer in the last season. He amassed 587 runs in 16 matches at an average of 39.13, including three half-centuries.
Aakash Chopra picks Punjab Kings playing XI
The cricketer-turned-commentator Aakash chopra also picked Punjab‘s playing XI and stated that the team will get even better when Jonny Bairstow joins the squad after completing his assignments with the England side.
“Dhawan and Mayank to open the innings. They might be the most consistent opening pair. With Bairstow not there for the first couple of matches, they will have to play Prabhsimran Singh at No. 3. Then comes Liam Livingstone and Shahrukh Khan, then Benny Howell at No. 6. Odean Smith, Rahul Chahar, Kagiso Rabada, Sandeep Sharma, and Arshdeep as the bowlers. This team will be even better after Bairstow returns,” Chopra concluded.
Punjab Kings will begin their IPL 2022 campaign against Royal Challengers Bangalore on March 27.