Jaydev Unadkat 'excited' to lead pace attack in Sri Lanka
Cricketers old and young tend to be dreamers. But even in his wildest flight of fancy, Jaydev Unadkat would not have thought he would be leading India's attack in an overseas tri-nation tournament
Cricketers old and young tend to be dreamers. But even in his wildest flight of fancy, Jaydev Unadkat would not have thought he would be leading India's attack in an overseas tri-nation tournament as early as 2018. Injuries, injury management and experimentation have left Unadkat with the new white ball in the Nidahas Trophy. He managed 1-35 from three overs against Sri Lanka, when India lost, and 3-38 against Bangladesh, when the they only made 139 from 20 overs.
Despite that, this series is a big one for him. "It's exciting to think about the times coming up. I was waiting for this opportunity since the time I started playing cricket, and now that I have got it, I have got chances to prove myself at this level, it is up to me how I take it forward," he said. "Whatever opportunities I have got, I have tried to do as well as I can. There's always room for improvement. The next few months will be about how I improve my game now that I have got the confidence from the team."
Unadkat played one Test for India, in South Africa in 2010, without taking a wicket, but has since gained a few yards of pace and re-invented himself as an effective Twenty20 bowler. "Variations are the most important part of the game. To play with a batsman's mind, you need variations. When the batsman is expecting something and you do it differently, you are successful as a bowler. The wicket looks very good for batting from ball one," said Unadkat. "I haven't played here before in limited-overs cricket. The ball is coming on nicely, there's good bounce and that gives batsmen the freedom to go all out from ball one. Variation is not just about bowling different balls, it is important to vary the lengths, not allowing them to premeditate a shot."