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#COCExclusive Interview with Yuzvendra Chahal: "Virat always gave me the confidence to bowl freely."

By Umesh Lakhmani -

 


The 26-year-old Leg-break bowler, Yuzvendra Chahal, is only the second man in the history of T20I Cricket to take six wickets in a game. The T20 series against England was Yuzi's second series with the Indian Team and the man did no wrong. The Haryana boy bowled with a brave heart and justified his selection in the team with an impressive performance throughout the series.

    Just after the series got over, Circle of Cricket met with the star where he talked about his bowling, his experience of being a part of the Indian team, the Indian Premier League (IPL) and a lot more.


Tell us about your match-winning spell in the 3rd T20I? Did you prepare differently for this series?

       It is obviously a great feeling for me. Had I taken just 2-3 wickets, I would still have been very happy as long as I could help my team to win the game. It was just my second series with the Indian team and my first Man of the Match and Series. It indeed feels special to me and I feel positive about my cricket. I have worked a lot on my bowling and my game plan.

       Chinnaswamy is a familiar territory for you since you play for RCB in the IPL, did that help?

       We all know that the Chinnaswamy is a high scoring ground since the boundaries are smaller and that’s the reason why bowlers have a little bit of worry in their mind. But that worry has gone away from my head since I have been playing here since 3 years, it’s more like my home ground now. I had the confidence of doing well here since I have played so much here.

        Did Dhoni or Kohli give you any special tips before the game?

        Mahi bhai kept giving me useful tips on my bowling “Ye wala ball acha hai, aisi wicket pe is tarah ki ball daal”. On the other hand, Virat bhai gives me a lot of confidence and believes in my abilities.

       Your debut series for India was with all the youngsters in the team in Zimbabwe. But this time, you shared the dressing room with likes of Kohli, Dhoni, Yuvi, Nehra, Mishra, how did it feel?

      This series was very special since I shared the dressing room with them. The best part is that they treat you like you are same as them with no feeling of superiority. This made a lot of difference in the environment of the dressing room.

       Who is the funniest in the current Indian Team? Tell us about one incident which made you laugh?

      Yuvi paji, Mahi bhai, Virat bhai and Mandy (Mandeep Singh). They all are funny and they ensure that the morale of the team is high. The moment when Yuvi paji picked me up on his lap, during the final T20I, was actually a funny moment (Laughs).

    Did you learn a thing or two from leg spin veterans Amit Mishra and coach Anil Kumble?

       Both of them helped me a lot in the nets. We used to discuss with each other the art of leg spin bowling and how to set up a particular batsman. About how to bowl in different kind of wickets. We always planned and talked a lot before games.

       How has your stint with RCB helped you as a spin bowler?

       IPL, without a doubt, has has been a very important part of my career so far. The performances I had for RCB has helped me get into this Indian team since I have not played much of Ranji Trophy games for my state.

       Is there any difference in approach in Kohli’s captaincy for RCB and Indian team?

       Not really. Virat takes each game seriously and backs his bowlers all the time. He always told me to ball freely and not to worry if the batsman hits a six or two.

       You have been a part of India’s U-12 Chess team, did you quit chess for cricket?

        I used to play both chess and cricket simultaneously when I was very young. I was good at both but my interest was more in cricket and I am here right now.

      What are your plans for this year’s IPL?

      Apart from my bowling, I have to work on my batting and fielding. T20 is such a game in which you have to be good in everything you do so I will work hard on the other aspects apart from bowling.

        Considering the fact that India has established spinners like Ashwin and Jadeja in their ranks, do you think you can make it to the Champions Trophy 2017 squad with a good performance in the IPL?

       My focus is now on the IPL and I am not thinking too much ahead. My job is to keep performing, rest is up to God.