Chahal unperturbed by poor show against Aus

Last Updated 19 March 2019, 15:35 IST

Enjoying a high-flying phase since his debut in June 2016, Yuzvendra Chahal's career hit a speed-breaker in the away and home series against Australia. Chahal, who formed a potent spin combination with Kuldeep Yadav, ended up playing just three games against the Aussies as his form took a nosedive.

The Australians, having done their homework against Chahal and Kuldeep, handled both the spinners extremely well. Using their feet well against the two and forcing them to come up with alternatives, the Australians showed a way forward to many teams who had fallen victims to the tricks of Chahal and Kuldeep.

Personally, it was a forgettable series for Chahal. In the two T20Is he conceded 75 runs against just one wicket while in the lone ODI he played, he went for 80 runs taking 1 wicket. The poor returns upset all the momentum he had gathered en route to the World Cup starting on May 30.

Looking to regain his wicket-taking form in the IPL beginning this weekend, Royal Challengers Bangalore's Chahal blamed dew for the horror show in the second T20I in Bengaluru where he was taken to the cleaners by a marauding Glenn Maxwell.

"There is some pressure when you play for the Indian team. In that match, there was some dew and Maxwell batted very well. I learnt how to bowl in dew from that match," said Chahal ahead of a practice session at the Chinnaswamy Stadium on Tuesday.

"Obviously, with people having seen me, my job becomes more difficult now. We (Kuldeep and him) are varying our pace, trying more variation. Even they (Australia) are here to play cricket, we are not here to play gully cricket. We played a couple of matches against them. They read us pretty well. It's a good sign, we can prepare ourselves more. We are ready for the World Cup."

Kuldeep had recently declared that he doesn't go full tilt during IPL practice sessions because batsmen from other countries could pick up the secrets. When asked if he too does the same, Chahal felt in this day and age it's hard to keep a secret under wraps for long.

"I think mine is a bit opposite. There are videos for everyone to see. If you want to check upon my variations, it is even there on YouTube. When I bowl to big-hitters, then I will get a fair idea as to where I should not bowl to such batsmen. I am going to learn when I bowl to them."

RCB's coaches Gary Kirsten and Ashish Nehra opined that playing in the two-month long IPL just before the World Cup will prove beneficial especially for the Indians. Chahal echoed the same thoughts although the formats are completely different -- IPL being T20s and World Cup 50 overs.

"Obviously, it works for me. In the IPL you play in front of full crowds, you get that experience and you play with so many legends. If you perform well in the IPL, you go to the Indian team with higher confidence. In ODIs you have 10 overs, so you can come back. Here you have only 4 overs. T20 is faster than ODI, you have to manage that. In ODIs, you might bowl your 10 overs in three spells, here you might bowl two spells or even one spell," said Chahal.

The leg-spinner felt RCB are blessed with a stronger middle-order this time. "This season, we have a proper side. In the last season, we struggled in the middle overs, but you can see here that there are around 4-5 middle order batsmen like (Shimron) Hetmyer, Gurkeerat (Singh) and all. So, it can be said that we are a stronger side, compared to last year."

(Published 19 March 2019, 15:29 IST)

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