It's a great feeling to play with great players, says Mithun

It's a great feeling to play with great players, says Mithun

India's Abhimanyu Mithun successfully appeals for the dismissal of Sri Lanka's Prasanna Jayawardena on the third day of their first cricket test in Galle, Sri Lanka. AP

Munaf took three for 72 and four for 25 in March 2006 to bowl India to a nine-wicket victory and finish with match figures of seven for 97, the best by an Indian paceman on debut. Mithun may or may not get the chance to build on his first-innings figures of four for 105 from 28 overs, but he has already caught the eye of almost everyone with his discipline and composure.
It’s been a wonderful run for the 20-year-old Bangalorean, who only made his first-class debut last November. “It was a great feeling playing with great players,” he said on Tuesday evening, his excitement all too obvious.

“Before the start of the match, the senior players spoke to me and said everyone will have some pressure on debut. They told me not to think of it as pressure but to just enjoy the moment. So I was enjoying every session.”

A brief stint with the Test squad, for the Nagpur showdown against South Africa, had given him an idea of what Test cricket necessitated, Mithun said. “When I was with the team during the South African Test series at home, it was a good experience for me to see the bowlers bowl and prepare,” he noted.
“I came to know the difference between international and domestic cricket. I have kept working on that in the meanwhile,” the second highest-wicket-taker in last domestic season said.

“It’s good for me to start early as a fast bowler,” Mithun observed of the rapidity with which he has climbed the ranks. “Usually, when a fast bowler starts his career, he bowls a lot in the junior level. By the time he breaks through, he is a little different. It is good for me to straightaway start playing for India.”

Ishant Sharma and Mithun between them began Tuesday a lot better than Sunday. Asked what tips they had got during Monday’s washed-out day, Mithun replied, “Gary Kirsten and Eric Simons told us to keep bowling in good areas, to back ourselves. Today morning, the wicket had some help for the faster bowlers, we tried to make the batsmen play a lot of the time. It was a good challenge,” Mithun said.

“On the first day, there was absolutely no help from the conditions but today, from the morning itself there was help for the fast bowlers.

“The ball was moving around after lunch and there was bounce too,” pointed out Mithun, who added that his first wicket (of Tillakaratne Dilshan) was his most enjoyable.
“I was feeling very happy then, I just wanted to give my best.” The return of senior pros like Zaheer Khan and S Sreesanth would not deter him, Mithun asserted.
“I will think of my game, what I should do and how I should work hard to become a better bowler. I have the confidence to be myself. I will work on my strengths and not think about anything else,” the Karnataka lad said.

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