After starring in South Zone's comprehensive 116-run victory with plenty of overs to spare over Central Zone in the Deodhar Trophy quarter final here yesterday, century-maker Baba Aparajith said he was not aware the national selectors were watching the game.
"I got a hundred in my debut game of Deodhar trophy (against East Zone last season). It is always good to score a hundred and that too in front of the selectors. But I didn't know that they were present. I just wanted to focus on the game," said the 20-year-old Tamil Nadu batsman, who scored a classy 113 in his side's imposing total of 296 for nine.
Aparajith, who bowls off spin, said the Wankhede Stadium track this morning was challenging to bat, with the ball doing
something. "It was a challenging wicket to play on because in the morning it was doing a bit.
The first 15 overs was very important because both their fast bowlers were bowling well," said the man of the match referring to the initial spells of Central's Pankaj Singh - who bagged a fifer - and Ishwar Pandey.
"In Mumbai the first one hour is always difficult because it's a bit damp, there is moisture in the wicket. After one hour and once you get set it is very good to bat on. There is good bounce and you can always trust the bounce and ba t."
He also complimented his fourth-wicket partner, Karnataka's Karun Nair, with whom he shared a stand of 124 in 109 balls to lift South from 88 for three. "When Karun came in he guided me well. He told me that we should stay on the wicket and play normal good cricket and runs will take care of themselves.
He is a player who, once he gets set, will get runs easily and can easily clear the field. "So for the first 20-25 balls he was just batting after that the pace of flow of runs changed and we started getting runs. In a ten-over period we got more than 60 runs, I think." He also said he wanted to do well in all three formats of the game, by adapting to each of them.