When he is not bowling in the nets or training, you will find Yuzvendra â€‹Chahal chatting with his teammates in one corner of the dressing room, or playing PubG on his phone.
That’s how it has been for the 29-year-old spinner.
Ask him and he admits that keeping things simple has worked well for him. Having featured in 50 One-Day Internationals (ODIs) and 34 Twenty20 Internationals (T20Is) for India and scalping a total of 135 wickets, Chahal knows what it takes to find breakthroughs in crunch times.
But then, he is not willing to rest on his laurels. “As a professional player, you need to perform in every situation and I am just trying to continue with that,” he says.
In Mumbai, to play the group league fixtures of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy for Haryana, Chahal spoke to Sportstar at the Bandra-Kurla Complex on a range of issues…
The last few weeks have been quite busy for you. After the T20I series against Bangladesh, you turned up for Haryana in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy. How has been the experience so far?
Whenever I am not playing for India, I make it a point to play domestic cricket. This is a T20 tournament and now that a lot of T20Is and the ODIs are coming, I thought this will help me. You are playing against very good domestic sides, and now that we have qualified for the Super League, there are opportunities to play against some stronger sides like Karnataka. So, leading up to the international cricketing season, this experience will help for sure.
You featured in five league matches of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy and scalped only three wickets. Coming from international cricket, how difficult is it to adjust to domestic cricket?
I see the situation and a lot depends on when I am bowling and what is required from me. That’s something I do when I play for India and I try to follow the same thing in the domestic circuit. It is about reading the batsmen right and understanding their mindset. As a key bowler, that’s very important. In the domestic tournaments, the wickets are different from international cricket, and my idea is to adapt to them as quickly as possible and bowl accordingly. The process remains the same, it’s just about executing the plans properly.
What are the things that you do differently while playing in the domestic tournaments?
When you play well here, it gives you confidence. In these games, you can understand how things stand and what are the areas you need to work on. If you can get the rhythm here, it helps you gain confidence and that effectively reflects on your performance at the higher level. So, these experiences are really helpful for a cricketer. It helps you get a better idea about your game.
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