T20 cricket is the shortest international format of cricket, in which every ball counts. In T20 cricket, the strike rate is extremely important, and the batter must keep up with the game’s pace to assist the team to cross the finish line. Teams have tended to prioritize aggressive batters at the start of innings in order to take advantage of the power-play.
However, there have been a number of occasions when batters have shown up just to be unable to play. In the T20 format, no batter enjoys playing slowly, yet the pressure of the moment and the playing conditions can affect the batting strike rate.
On that note, let’s take a look at the five Indian batsmen with the lowest strike rate in a T20I inning.
#5 Gautam Gambhir- 93.33
Gautam Gambhir has been a dependent batsman for the Indian team over the years and has played several crucial knocks to guide India towards victory. In the second T20I against Australia at Melbourne in 2012, India were given a target of 132 by the hosts.
The Indian batters were up against a lethal Australian bowling lineup and needed someone to play the role of anchor to chase the total. Gambhir stepped up on the occasion and played a gritty knock of 56 runs from 60 deliveries and stayed not-out until the end to help India chase the target with two balls to spare.
#4 Shikhar Dhawan- 95.23
Shikhar Dhawan was given the opportunity to lead the second-string Indian side in the recently concluded limited-overs series against Sri Lanka. The Indian team were unfortunately struck by the Covid-19 outburst and thus 10 players were forced to undergo mandatory quarantine, leaving the visitors with just 11 players including only five batters.
In the second T20I at Colombo, Dhawan had a tough task ahead of him to carry the innings and play long, but could manage only 40 runs from 42 deliveries. India lost the match unfortunately by four wickets.
#3 Dinesh Mongia- 84.44
Dinesh Mongia is third on the list of the Indian players with the lowest strike rate in a T20I inning. In the only T20I between India and South Africa in 2006 at Johannesburg, the hosts were restricted to a below-par score of 126.
Coming out to chase, India lost Tendulkar early in the innings and needed someone to hold the crease while Sehwag accelerates from the other end. Mongia played the role of anchor and scored 38 runs off 45 deliveries before Dinesh Karthik finished the match in 19.5 overs.
#2 MS Dhoni- 78.38
Regarded as one of the greatest finishers in cricket, MS Dhoni’s name comes as a surprise in this list. He played one of his most forgettable knocks against Australia in the 1st T20I at Visakhapatnam in 2019.
Batting first, Rahul smashed a brilliant 36-ball fifty but didn’t get support from the other end as Dhoni was unable to get going. Dhoni scored 29 runs off 37 deliveries and even remained until the end, but was able to guide India only to a total of 126. Australia went on the chase the target and defeated India by 3 wickets.
#1 Ravindra Jadeja- 71.42
Ravindra Jadeja is among the best hard-hitting batters currently, but was seen unable to handle pressure as a youngster when he featured in his maiden T20 World Cup in 2009. Chasing a total of 154 against England at London, India got off to a horrible start, losing the top order early in the innings, which brought Jadeja at the crease inside four overs.
Jadeja was unable to play his shots and was dismissed on 25 runs from 35 deliveries, which increased the burden of the batters to follow. Despite cameos from Yuvraj Singh, MS Dhoni, and Yusuf Pathan, India fell short by three runs.