Was a bit confused, I can’t be the bowler I was never there: Yuzvendra Chahal


  • Chahal said that I felt bad when I was dropped from the T20 World Cup
  • He said that I could not be bothered continuously, it would have affected the IPL.
  • Whether the spinner is of wrist or finger, strategy has to be made to take wickets.

New Delhi
Leg spinner Yuzvendra Chahal was not included in the Indian team of T20 World Cup. The cricket world was quite surprised by this. For the last four years, he has been a vital part of the Indian team in limited overs. Chahal proved to be a perfect fit in the Indian strategy of relying on wrist spinners. However, Rahul Chahar was included in place of Chahal. The reason given was that Chahar’s speed is high. However, Chahar’s performance in the IPL continued to improve. It felt like he was taunting the selectors with his game. However, he has returned in the series against New Zealand. Before entering Bio-Bubble in Jaipur, he talked about many issues in a special conversation with our colleague Times of India.

You were not in the T20 World Cup team. How did you come out of this?
I was not dropped for four years and then I was dropped for such a big event. I felt very bad. I didn’t understand anything for two or three days. But I knew that the second phase of IPL was about to begin. My wife and family continued to encourage me. My fans kept posting motivational posts continuously. These things inspired me. I followed my strength and cleared my confusion. I couldn’t be bothered continuously as it would have affected my form in IPL as well.

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You could not play much cricket due to the corona virus epidemic. So how difficult was it to keep improving or face it, especially when you had a great IPL 2020?
It was always challenging. Whenever the bio-bubble had to be quarantined for seven days, your rhythm would get disturbed. You would have to try to get back on the same track once again in practice three. But we needed to adjust to it. In a pandemic, there is no better option than this. If you see, after Shardul Thakur, I have taken the most wickets for India. Yes, my economy rate was high but it also depends on the conditions in which you are bowling. I am not denying that I bowled poorly in some matches. But for that you have to give credit to the batsmen as well.

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You talked about economy rate, but you were included for taking wickets, bowling aggressively. Have you thought of making yourself a defensive bowler by bowling a little faster?
The 250 wickets that I have taken in T20 cricket are because I have bowled on my strength. I can’t imagine becoming the bowler I was not. I was a bit confused about my bowling but in the end I thought of bowling on my own.


What would you say about the changing perspective on the impact of wrist spinners?
If you look at the T20 World Cup carefully, you will find that the wrist spinners have done well. It would be wrong to say that the wrist spinners have enjoyed their time a lot over the years. They are still doing amazing in the World Cup in UAE. It doesn’t matter whether he is a wrist spinner or a finger spinner – you always have to find ways to take wickets. It would also be wrong to say that only wrist spinners can take wickets. Finger spinners who performed well found a place in the team. The problem we have here is that there is a comparison between wrist and finger spinners. Finger spinners play a similar role in taking wickets.

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Looks like the batsmen are starting to understand you better now. How hard are you trying to understand the batsmen of the world?
I spend a lot of time in this. If you look at the IPL, I have always been one of the top spinners. It’s more of a mindgame than someone reading it. I am not a mystery spinner like Ajantha Mendis. Rashid Khan is a bowler of a different league. I think he is in the forefront. Like we used to talk about Muralitharan sir or Shane Warne sir. I rely more on mindgames. I don’t try many variations. I rely only on the variations that I have.

You have a good relationship with Virat Kohli. But your relationship with Rohit Sharma (the new captain of T20) goes back to the times of Mumbai Indians…
I have always had a good relationship with Rohit. We are like family. Be it Rohit or Ritika Bhabhi, she has always treated me like a younger brother. We always go to dinner together. Whenever we are on the field I share my opinion with him. Like in the 2019 World Cup, we gave Kuldeep Yadav an over in front of Babar Azam on a special occasion and we got a wicket. Our relationship goes beyond cricket. When you put so much trust in someone, its effect is visible on the field as well. It always feels good that I always get positive feedback and atmosphere if I share something with them.


Chahal is back in the T20 series against New Zealand (Photo- BCCI)


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