Hanuma Vihari on MS Dhoni: The Indian batsman expressed his desire of sharing the dressing room with the veteran cricketer.
India batsman Hanuma Vihari has given the intentions of being well-prepared for his first season of the Indian Premier League as a capped player. Having played 17 and five matches for Sunrisers Hyderabad in 2013 and 2015 respectively, Vihari was overlooked for the last three seasons of the cash-rich league.
The right-hand batsman became a victim of typecasting as he was considered to be a red-ball player. Impressive performances in First-class matches saw Vihari making his Test debut against England last year. Having scored an impressive half-century on debut at The Oval, Vihari went on to open the batting in Australia.
While he might not have scored the expected number of runs down under, Vihari surely put on display the character to face Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins on their home soil.
“I was really excited to open at the MCG”
In an exclusive interview with Times Now, Vihari wasn’t hesitant to say that playing in England and Australia is a different experience. “Completely different channel. In England, it is more about the conditions, although the bowlers have good skills. But Australia is more about the pace and bounce of the wicket. But they are totally different channels altogether,” Vihari was quoted as saying.
“I was happy that I got the opportunity. Opening in front of 80,000 people on Boxing Day, nothing can excite you more. I was really excited! The support staff informed me and said you have a good technique so believe in yourself that you can go out there and do the job for the team and that is what I exactly tried,” Vihari added regarding opening the batting at the MCG.
The 25-year old batsman, who has played four Tests since his debut, saw his praiseworthy character alluring buyers during the auction ahead of IPL 2019. Priced at INR 50 lakh, Vihari was eventually purchased by Delhi Capitals for INR 2 crore.
Sounding confident of representing India in limited-overs cricket, the batsman from Andhra believes the IPL can open doors for him in the limited-overs side. “I have been performing well for the last couple of years at the domestic level. You can look at the white-ball stats as well, and I feel IPL might be a good push for me to have a position in the One-day setup. I am looking forward to it,” he said.
“Would have loved to share the dressing room with Dhoni”
Talking about his forced three-year long IPL sabbatical, Vihari believes that he has changed as a batsman. With the Delhi Capitals comprising of several hard-hitting Indian batsmen, he let out that he is open to bat at any position in IPL 2019.
“I have changed a lot in the last few years, not only in my game, but on the outlook of how I look at things have changed, so somehow expectations are there to perform. [On his batting position] Anywhere! Anywhere the team asks me to play! I am comfortable playing the role of an opener as well as of a finisher,” Vihari further said.
There is no escaping from the fact that every contemporary young Indian cricketer aspires to share the dressing room with former India captain and current wicket-keeper batsman Mahendra Singh Dhoni. Vihari is no different.
Being asked about if he regrets not playing alongside the 37-year old cricketer, Vihari made public his desire of sharing the dressing room with Dhoni. “I would have loved to share the dressing room with MS Dhoni, but I would not say ‘regret’ but I was not fortunate enough to share the dressing room with him. But maybe in future, you never know,” Vihari concluded.
How Twitter reacted:
.@Hanumavihari talks of his success with the national team, and expects to display the attacking side of his game in the upcoming IPL! 👊 #DCDiaries 🎥 #ThisIsNewDelhi #DelhiCapitals pic.twitter.com/iTX1ncOFRX
— Delhi Capitals (@DelhiCapitals) March 5, 2019
Vijay Shankar in ODIs is like Hanuma Vihari in tests.. Ready to give and contribute for the team always and in any situation but quietly not aggressively. What are your thoughts?@cricketaakash @bhogleharsha @jatinsapru @harbhajan_singh @VVSLaxman281 @vikrantgupta73 @manoj_dimri
— Kanishk Johri (@KanishkJohri) March 5, 2019
I think it is number 4 which is a problem. Hanuma Vihari could be an option after world cup
— Pankaj Garg (@pankajgargi) March 2, 2019
— Delhi Capitals (@DelhiCapitals) February 27, 2019
Likewise numerous other cricketers who have made it to the national side on the back of their IPL form, Vihari would also be looking forward to IPL 2019 to both prove his credentials with the white ball and eventually play for India in limited-over formats.