Punjab fast bowler, Siddharth Kaul who has impressed one and all with his decent performances in the 2017 IPL while playing for Sunrisers Hyderabad, has now had an amazing time with the ball in the recently concluded tri-nation series involving India A, South Africa A and Afghanistan A in South Africa.
The integral member of India ‘A’ squad, Kaul claimed 8 wickets to his name during the series only second to Shardul Thakur (9). As a result, the Manish Pandey-led team beat South Africa ‘A’ by 7 wickets in the all-important final. The proudest moment, however, for the 27-year-old was when he got a pat on the back from the legendary Rahul Dravid.
“Rahul Dravid sir appreciated the way I bowled in the series. He is a tremendous teacher and a great observer. He lauded the way I swung the ball both ways,” said Siddharth, who scalped 16 wickets in 10 IPL matches this year.
“He [Dravid]said that I bowled similar to Bhuveshwar Kumar in the series and if Bhuvi paaji could be in the Indian team, I could be too. It was important for me to maintain consistency after IPL and deliver the goods in South Africa.” the ecstatic youngster further said.
In the triangular series, Kaul shared the new ball with Shardul and also bowled in the slog overs. The Pujab lad also thanked skipper Manish Pandey for his strong showing throughout the tournament.
“In IPL you have a lot of established cricketers around you. So sometimes you have to bowl according to their vision. Pandey bhai gave me all the freedom and told me to bowl to my plans. He believed in my abilities which further increased my confidence,” quoted Siddharth, who took 2/55 in the final against South Africa ‘A’.
“We got quick as well as flat wickets during the competition. It was a challenge to adjust to the changing conditions and bowl accordingly. I need to perform like this and maintain consistency. Also, there is no substitute for hard work. I am going to take part in the local Punjab cricket tournaments and aim to retain a berth in the India A team for a tour to New Zealand in coming months. I want to bag a place in the Indian ODI team.” he added.
Besides, Siddharth also had an astonishing domestic season as he bagged 35 wickets in eight matches during the Ranji Trophy and took 12 in the five Vijay Hazare Trophy matches.
“Rahul Dravid sir’s words are running in my mind. I should make most of the chances now and aim for an India call-up. I want to do it for him,” Siddharth concluded.