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Rediff.com  » Cricket » IPL Extras: 'In T20 one needs to react according to the situation'

IPL Extras: 'In T20 one needs to react according to the situation'

Last updated on: April 11, 2014 20:48 IST

IPL Extras: 'In T20 one needs to react according to the situation'

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Having missed out on the recent World T20 and Asia Cup action, lanky pacer Ishant Sharma is fit and raring to go for Sunrisers Hyderabad in the seventh edition of the Indian Premier League, starting April 16, in Abu Dhabi.

"Obviously, you feel bad when you are not part of the T20 World Cup. It is a big tournament, but it is not in my hand.

"If I am playing Test cricket or wherever I am playing, I have to do well in those conditions and that particular format," Ishant said.

Ishant, who did a splendid job for Sunrisers in the last edition, hopes to put up a good show in the new season as well.

"Obviously, I am looking forward to do well in the new season. I am bowling well. I am in good rhythm.

"I played in domestic Twenty20, bowled well, took some wickets. I am confident with my bowling and, hopefully, I will do well for the Sunrisers this time as well," he said.

Replying to a query on the UAE wickets, he said the pitch conditions are the same anywhere in Asia and execution of plans is a crucial aspect in the shortest format.

"I think the wicket will be the same. It does not matter whether you play in India or UAE; wicket will be the same in Asia. You should know where you need to bowl in the T20 format.

"You don't need to see how the wicket is going to behave. You just need to execute your plans well. That's it," he said.

Ishant said he is certainly eying a comeback to the national fold, but will not setting personal goals for himself as that would create unnecessary pressure.

"I don't set personal goals for myself, because, in doing so, you end up putting pressure on yourself.

"In T20 cricket one needs to react according to the situation," he added.

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Image: Ishant Sharma
Photographs: BCCI

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'I'm three-dimensional in terms of batting, bowling and fielding'

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Kieron Pollard scored a match-winning century for Trinidad and Tobago in a three-day Caribbean first-class game against Jamaica and immediately declared he is looking forward to the upcoming seventh season of the IPL.

It was the Mumbai Indians all-rounder's second match after being sidelined for six months by a knee injury.

He scored 111 off 169 balls as Trinidad and Tobago won by 145 runs.

Mumbai Indians enter the cash-rich IPL as defending champions.

Pollard's last match before sustaining the injury was the Champions League final, in which he claimed three wickets to set up Mumbai Indians' second title triumph.

Pollard, who was one of the five players retained by the franchise ahead of the 2014 auction, said: "We're the defending champions, so the pressure is always there. You always want to win that tournament.

"For me, it's to do whatever is required; it's Twenty20 cricket. It's not every day you're going to come off, so it's what the team requires at that point in time and adjust their game to suit.

"I'm three-dimensional in terms of batting, bowling and fielding, so I just want to go out there and do my best."

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Image: Kieron Pollard
Photographs: BCCI

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Irfan Pathan looks to cash in on IPL

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Out-of favour all-rounder Irfan Pathan said he is aiming to stage a comeback into the Indian team by using to fullest the opportunity of playing for Sunrisers Hyderabad in the upcoming IPL.

"I planned for comeback. I played nine matches for Baroda ahead of IPL. I played one-day matches in domestic cricket. I played T20 domestic cricket for Baroda. I could give a good performance even after an injury.

"This IPL, I would like to do well and try to get into the team. I was out of the team because of injury. I will try to improve further so that I can come back," Pathan said.

Asked how difficult it is to make a comeback, he replied: "I staged a comeback earlier too, so I know that. It is simple.

"You should be fit and give a good performance. If you do these two things, you can!"

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Image: Irfan Pathan
Photographs: Anesh Debiky/Gallo Images/Getty Images

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'Batting order does not matter'

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He said he is trying to be good enough to perform whatever role he is assigned by Sunrisers Hyderabad.

"It depends on the team management to decide which position I should play in the batting order. The coach spoke to me and told me what he expects from me. Number [in batting order] does not matter. My aim is to come out with a good performance, whether with bat or ball. I will be ready to bat at any order," he said.

The experience of having played in the UAE will help him, as the initial phase is being staged in the Emirates, he said.

"I played in Abu Dhabi. I played a couple of games there. I know the pitches. But this is going to be after a couple of years. It is pretty similar to India," he added.

"The experience I have of playing around the world, playing in domestic cricket and in international cricket, I think that's going to be a big factor."

Asked what are the areas he is focusing on to come up with a good performance, he said: "Every area. Bowling with the new ball, bowling in the death overs, bowling in the middle overs as well as batting.

"The more matches I play, the better I am going to get with my rhythm."

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Image: Irfan Pathan
Photographs: Anesh Debiky/Gallo Images/Getty Images

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'NZC knew that IPL was necessary to prolong careers'

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The 'club versus country' debate has been on since the IPL's inception in 2008, but former New Zealand captain Ross Taylor feels his country's Board was among the first to realise that "allowing players in the IPL will only prolong their international careers".

New Zealand, for some years now, does not plan any bilateral series during the IPL, which allows all its players to ply their trade in the cash-rich league and earn handsome salaries.

"New Zealand Cricket has done a very good job [by keeping the window open during the IPL].

"We don't have the same depth of players like some of the other countries, so it is good that our players come and play in the IPL.

"Ultimately by playing in IPL, the players get to play for New Zealand for a longer time," the Delhi Daredevils' player said.

"The way it has gone, NZC knows that to keep the players playing for as long as possible; both the Board and the players will have to give in a little bit."

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Image: Ross Taylor
Photographs: Anesh Debiky/Gallo Images/Getty Images

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'Nice to come back to a franchise that I am familiar with'

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Taylor has been a kind of IPL journeyman, having played for four franchises --Royal Challengers Bangalore, Rajasthan Royals, Delhi Daredevils and Pune Warriors -- in his last six seasons.

Back in familiar territory, the 30-year-old veteran of 54 Tests and 137 ODIs is happy though.

"I think it's been great. It's nice to come back to a franchise that I am familiar with. Going to three franchises in three years was a little disruptive," Taylor conceded.

Taylor will also have some firsthand inputs for the Daredevils as the New Zealand team had a week-long camp in Abu Dhabi ahead of the ICC World T20.

"We just went there for training before the World T20. The practice pitches were a bit worn out at that point of time. Hopefully, they have grown a bit of grass by now."

Asked about his preferred batting position, Taylor made it clear that he would ideally like to bat at No 4 or 5.

"The higher you bat, more time you spend out there in the middle. Number 4 or 5 is probably my ideal spot. There has been a few minor changes in my batting."

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Image: Ross Taylor
Photographs: Anesh Debiky/Gallo Images/Getty Images

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'A very good balance in our side that allows us to adapt'

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Describing Sunrisers Hyderabad as a balanced side, the team's chief coach, Tom Moody, and mentor, Krishnamachari Srikkanth, exuded confidence of a successful campaign in the upcoming season.

"Obviously, we had a good campaign last year, given that it was our first IPL as Sunrisers Hyderabad. This year we feel confident again. We feel we have got a very good balance in our side that allows us to adapt," Moody said.

Sunrisers Hyderabad reached the play-offs last year.

Srikkanth said the "core team" has been retained this year and that would ensure continuity.

"As far as we are concerned, I think the team is well-prepared. One thing I just want to add on to what Tom said regarding the team aspect is, we got the core team with us.

"We have got Shikhar Dhawan, Ishant Sharma is right here, Karn Sharma is here. He was a member of last year's team.

"We have, of course, Amit Mishra, Darren Sammy and Dale Steyn.

"The most important thing is we were able to manage somehow to get almost the core team. Last year, we gelled well together and did well. I think that's a very important aspect," he said.

Noting that all the teams comprise good and talented players, Srikkanth felt the competition this year will be more evenly poised.

"Every team has planned it very well. One good thing about this IPL is, it is going to be an evenly-balanced tournament. Last couple of years, there were sides which were, at least on paper, rated very weak. This time, all the eight teams have got good players. It is going to be a good tournament. It is going to be very well-fought tournament," he said.

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Image: Sunrisers Hyderabad
Photographs: BCCI

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'My stint with RCB will help me improve'

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Mumbai-born Kenyan cricketer Tanmay Mishra knows that it will be an arduous task to break into the playing eleven of Royal Challengers Bangalore, but is hopeful that it will be a great learning experience from him.

"I was very excited when I was picked by RCB. I knew I am going into a team full with world-class players. It is a good opportunity for me to learn and improve my game and give my hundred per cent and enjoy this moment," he said, in an interview to RCB's official website.

Mishra, who made his ODI debut for Kenya in 2006 against Zimbabwe at Bulawayo, recalled his gritty 72 runs knock against Australia in the 2011 World Cup at the Chinnaswamy stadium.

"In 2011, probably one of the best nights I have had in my life when I got an opportunity to play against Australia and I did quite well. Yes, this ground [Chinnaswamy] holds for me special memories," he said.

Mishra, in the company of Collins Obuya, shared a 115-run partnership after Kenya suffered early jolts while chasing Australia's 325-run target. Kenya could score just 264 in 50 overs.

"To be very honest, even in 2007, when Afro-Asia Cup was introduced, I had captained the T20 squad. That was my first fond memory of Chinnaswamy stadium," he added.


Image: Tanmay Mishra
Photographs: Daniel Berehulak/Getty Images

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