Team India head coach Rahul Dravid said that all-rounder Deepak Chahar has shown his quality in the limited opportunities he has gotten, and the side would like to give him more of a consistent run in the playing XI.
Half-centuries by Virat Kohli (65), Shikhar Dhawan (61), and Deepak Chahar (54) went in vain as India suffered a heartbreaking four-run loss against South Africa in the third and final ODI here at Newlands, Cape Town. With this win, the Proteas won the ODI series 3-0.
"Deepak Chahar has shown in the opportunities he has gotten with us in Sri Lanka and over here well, he has got some really good ability with the bat. We know what he can do with the ball as well. I have seen him at India A as well and I know he can bat really well so certainly gives us a lot more options," said Dravid during a virtual press conference.
"It is nice to have people like him and Shardul Thakur as well, who we have seen in the last couple of games, contribute with the bat as well. So, obviously, the more and more players like this who can contribute lower down, certainly makes a big difference and give us more options.
"Certainly we would like to give Deepak more games along with Shardul and lot of other people who can step up in the course of next year or so and give us depth in the side."
When asked about the plans for the 2023 World Cup, Dravid said: "I think this ODI series has been a good eye-opener for us. We have not played a lot of ODIs, this has been my first stint with the ODI side. Even the team itself has not played many ODIs after the 2019 World Cup. Luckily, we have got time to go before the 2023 World Cup. It is going to be a lot of cricket in white-ball format till 2023.
"It is going to be a good opportunity for us to really reflect and learn and keep getting better. We will get better, there is no doubt that. We certainly good do better with the batting in middle overs, we understand the template and we know a large part of that template is also dependent on the balance of your squad," he added.
Earlier, Quinton de Kock and Rassie van der Dussen played knocks of 124 and 52 as South Africa posted 287 runs on the board. For India, Prasidh Krishna returned with three wickets.
"If you are honest, some of the guys who can balance the side are out and are not here available for selection. When they come back, they will probably give us a little more depth which allows us to play in a certain different style. Having said that, even South Africa who batted first twice, on two occasions scored only 290 as well," said Dravid.
"If I look at the 30-over mark in both those games, we should have chased down the target, we did not because we played some poor shots and we did not play smart cricket in critical situations. But having said that, there is a lot we can learn from this series, there is a lot to reflect on and we will get better."