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Shikhar Dhawan in action for Punjab Kings during IPL 2023© BCCI

Shikhar Dhawan is on the verge of creating history in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 and a fifty-plus score against Lucknow Super Giants on Saturday will take him ahead of Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma in an elite list. The Punjab Kings skipper has 49 half-centuries in the tournament till now and he can become the first Indian batter ever to score 50 fifties in IPL. While Kohli has 47 half-centuries till now, Rohit has only 42. Dhawan has been enjoying a tremendous run of form in IPL 2023 till now with two fifties in three matches and the onus will be on him to provide a good start to PBKS.

After a flying start to the new season with two wins, the Dhawan-led Punjab Kings endured two back-to-back losses following their failure to post good totals on the board.

If skipper Shikhar Dhawan was left to carry the team on his shoulders against Sunrisers Hyderabad, the day he failed the other batters could only manage 153 for 8 against Gujarat Titans, mainly because of Shahrukh Khan’s nine-ball 22.

The main reason behind PBKS’s underwhelming total was their failure to push the scoring in the middle overs between 10 and 15. They ended up playing 56 dot balls, an area where the team will have to get better.

“We did not put many runs on the board. We have to rectify that thing going forward. If you see the number of dot balls, if a team plays 56 balls, you end up losing the game,” Dhawan had said after the loss.

With scores of 40, 86 not out and 99 not out in his first three innings, Dhawan remains undoubtedly the most impactful player but it is the inconsistency of the other batters that is a reason for worry.

(With PTI inputs)

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