Hanuma Vihari targeting No. 4 spot: The Indian batsman has eyes on the No. 4 spot in the Indian ODI squad.
India batsman Hanuma Vihari has given evident signals of eyeing the No. 4 spot in Indian ODI team. During a recent interview with The Times of India, Vihari made public that he can adapt to that role with his skills.
“I think I fit the bill [for the No. 4 spot]. I’ve got the technique. You need someone at that No. 4 spot who has a good technique and can adapt to any situation. I think I’ve the skills and the game to succeed at that position,” Vihari was quoted as saying.
The 25-year old batsman, who has played four Tests since his debut last year, saw his gritty performances at the Test level 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.
Hanuma Vihari considers IPL as ‘perfect platform’
Having played 17 and five matches for Sunrisers Hyderabad in 2013 and 2015 respectively, Vihari was overlooked for the last three seasons of the Indian Premier League. He sounded keen on taking on the IPL challenge in a bid to be in contention for India’s limited-overs squad.
“The challenge for me is to perform in the IPL first. Rest depends on what the team management and the selectors think. Even with India ‘A’, in the white-ball format, I’ve done quite well. I feel I can take my game to the next level and this year’s IPL will be a perfect platform.
“I know I can play to any situation, even if it is the role of a finisher. I will go out there and express myself. If you have the will and hunger, then you can be successful in any role,” Vihari said.
In 22 IPL matches, the 25-year old batsman has scored 280 runs at an average of 15.55 and a strike rate of 89.45. With a mediocre T20 record to his name, Vihari was another of those batsman who are typecast as Test cricketers.
Hanuma Vihari on Kane Williamson and Virat Kohli
Reflecting on his past IPL performances, Vihari opined that lack of strength and exposure worked against him. Having played a lot of cricket and gained strength in the last three years, Vihari was confident of clearing the boundary with conventional shots this season.
“When I played the IPL before, I didn’t have the strength or exposure to clear the boundary. Now, I feel I have the strength; whenever I want to I can clear the boundary just by playing conventional shots.
“Players like Kane Williamson and Virat [Kohli] can maintain a good strike-rate by playing conventional shots. I look up to them, the way they play. I just have to plan my innings accordingly,” he added.
Hanuma Vihari on changing people’s perception
Laying emphasis on good technique, Vihari further spoke about quashing people’s assumptions with respect to him only being a Test player by performances in IPL 2019.
“I feel if you have a good technique then you can perform in all the three formats. It’s people’s assumption that I am just a Test player. I can only show them my performances. I am really looking forward to this year’s IPL where I can showcase my skills. It’s only the mindset that needs to be tuned,” he further added.
There is no denying to the fact that Delhi Capitals have underachieved for the most part of IPL. DC are among the three franchises to have played the tournament since 2008 but have not won it once.
With five wins in 14 matches, Capitals had finished at the bottom of the points table last year. Highlighting Capitals’ exciting and young team for IPL 2019, Vihari hoped to reach the playoffs.
“When you’re down, the only thing that can happen is you go up. This year we have an exciting, young team. We would look to win back-to-back games so that we can reach the playoffs. All will depend on how we start the tournament,” he concluded.
How Twitter reacted:
— Delhi Capitals (@DelhiCapitals) March 18, 2019
— Saikrishna V 🇮🇳 (@Sai_Tweets_) March 18, 2019
So many players we tried at 4. To be fair Shreyas Iyer was going ok until they ditched him. If he was trusted, he’d have been a big match player already. Hits them better than Rishabh Pant.
— PK 🇮🇳 (@iPkoppula) March 18, 2019
— NDTV Sports (@Sports_NDTV) March 17, 2019
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