Robin Uthappa last represented India in November 2014 against the touring Sri Lanka side, but failed to make any impression with scores of 16 not out and 19 . Uthappa has got another chance to impress the selectors as he is part of the India squad for the tour of Zimbabwe.
The 29-year-old needs to make the most of this opportunity handed to him after some good performances in the domestic season along with the Indian Premier League.
Uthappa made his debut against England, where he scored 86 runs, which still happens to be his highest score till date. Since his debut in 2006, Uthappa has not been able to do much for India, and his below par performances has not allowed him to cement a regular place in the side.
Uthappa has not been able to justify his potential while representing India. He averages a modest 26.96, which does not help his cause as well. Hence, this Zimbabwe tour could prove to be his last chance to make a comeback into the Indian team.
To be fair, Uthappa has only got a chance to play for India when players have been injured or rested. He has seldom played a complete series for team India.
"I am pretty excited. The last few years I have been getting just one-off games at the end of the series. So I am pretty excited to get a complete series and a complete series with me keeping wickets," PTI quoted Uthappa as saying.
Uthappa is expected to keep wickets for India in MS Dhoni's absence. Ambati Rayudu can also don the role of a wicket-keeper/batsman.
"I assume I will be keeping wickets. I am the only one [in the squad] who keeps in domestic cricket."
Uthappa feels that keeping wickets will help him read the wicket much better, which in turn will help his batting.
"As a wicketkeeper you get a close view of the wicket," the KKR and Karnataka batsman said. "There's a lot of information you get as a wicketkeeper on how the pitches play and what kind of angles are available for batsmen."
With Dhoni retiring from Test cricket, Wriddhiman Saha has kept wickets for India in the longer format, and Uthappa, with some consistent performances with both the gloves and his willow in the Zimbabwe tour, can challenge Saha for the prestigious wicketkeeping role.
India will play three ODI matches and two T20Is against Zimbabwe starting on Friday.