After World Cup snub, Axar is eager to feature in the T20 World Cup which will begin in West Indies and USA next year. The preparation for the same has already begun, the all-rounder mentioned
Axar Patel (Pic: AFP)
- After World Cup snub, Axar is eager to feature in the T20 World Cup
- Patel dismissed three of Australia`s batting mainstays
- Axar Patel shone by conceding just 16 runs in his four-over spell
Axar Patel who was not a part of India's World Cup squad expressed that he was upset for not securing a place in the squad and it took him a week to get over that disappointment. Axar missed out due to a left quadricep injury which he faced during Asia Cup 2023 and veteran spinner Ravichandran Ashwin replaced him in the squad.
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All-rounder Axar Patel was unable to put on an impressive show with the willow but helped India to defend the target later in the second innings. Patel dismissed three of Australia's batting mainstays including World Cup final centurion Travis Head. Including the wicket of Head, Patel later went on to dismiss Ben McDermott and Aaron Hardie. Axar Patel shone by conceding just 16 runs in his four-over spell. Men in Blue won the match by 20 runs and claimed the series win against the Aussies
"Obviously, you are bound to be (disappointed). The World Cup was in India, but that injury happened. For the first few days, I was thinking about it, not being able to play due to injury," Axar told reporters during the post-match press conference.
"But, the team was doing well, so after 5-10 days, I was back to training and was doing my rehab. But, yes, when you are out due to injury and those 5-10 days you are not able to do anything, you do feel a bit bad. After that, I returned to routine life.
"I was upset, but it happened due to an injury; it's not in anyone's hands. It's part and parcel of the game."
Axar made an impressive return to international cricket, claiming five wickets in the series so far with his three-wicket haul setting up the 20-run win for India in the fourth T20I here on Friday night.
"If you are away from international cricket for some time due to injury and then come back, you try to prove yourself and you also have to look after your body, so I also took one match (at a time)," he said.
"When you come from injury you try to keep that part of the body safe. You are not able to give your full effort. It stays in the back of my mind.
"It doesn't happen in that way because the trainer already tells you that nothing will happen but while sprinting, you feel what if something happens again to the quadricep.
"But the first couple of matches, I was back to routine. Now I don't feel anything like that and the work that I put in the last one-and-a-half months, I am reaping the reward now, so I am happy overall."
"Before the T20 World Cup, I don't think India has a lot of T20 games scheduled, maybe 9-10 matches. So, we have to plan from now and prepare as there is the World Cup in June and then there is IPL in between, so the planning is going on," he said.
"All the players have been told about their respective roles, in what position they will play and once Rahul (Dravid) sir is back, there will be a detailed discussion but we know what we have to do in this series, so there is no confusion."
Axar, who has taken 44 wickets in 49 T20Is, was omitted from the T20I squad for the upcoming South Africa tour with Ravindra Jadeja replacing him.
Asked if he was fired up due to the snub, Axar said, "It is not like that if I would have gone for runs then you would have said that I was upset. I was normal.
"...there was nothing in my mind that I have to prove myself for that. I have been doing well and this is not my decision and I didn't think much about that. I am just happy I got wickets today."
"I didn't change my bowling much. There was dew in the last three matches, so we were bowling back of length but there was no dew today, so we could give the ball flight as the seam was not too wet," he said.
"There was grass on the pitch, so some balls were skidding, so they were facing difficulties. I have also been varying my pace for the last three matches, sometimes going for a few slower ones in between."
Partnership with Ravi Bishnoi
Axar formed a formidable left-right spin combination with young Ravi Bishnoi, who produced figures of 4-0-17-1.
"Throughout the series, he has been bowling well. His speed has been troubling the Australians, especially his googly and he has been working on his leg spin."
(With PTI Inputs)