In a conversation with TOI, the 22-year-old revisited the 2018 India-England series that saw him reach the international stage, the IPL, his growth as a player and more.
How do you see the next India-England series?
I think it’s going to be a great series with two really strong teams. Every time England shoots in India it’s really tough. But I’m really confident it’s going to be a great show and that being back in India will be great.
You had a memorable first round of tests against India in 2018. How confident will you be in this performance?
Personally, I have fond memories of this series. It was my first real taste of international cricket. It seems quite a long time ago now, but I definitely have this in mind to give me confidence. But I’m still looking ahead. If I am given the opportunity to play test cricket in India it will be amazing, and I hope I can contribute to the team.
Do you think that coming to India after playing a series in Sri Lanka is ideal since the conditions are more or less similar?
I think it’s definitely better than being stuck in the cold in England. But I think playing 2 sets of test matches in Sri Lanka before a set in India will be great for us to get used to the really hot conditions, and sometimes the wickets can be similar. Playing competitive cricket before the series is awesome because I personally learn a lot from playing in matches.
You have been called a complete cricketer by MS Dhoni who drives you CSK and Virat kohli also praised your skills. How have you seen yourself evolving in recent years in international cricket?
I think over the past few years I’ve been incredibly lucky to be able to share the dressing room with some amazing players who have been playing international cricket for so long, being able to ask questions, seeing how the best training players really helped me. and playing a few games at the highest level taught me that you have to learn and adapt very quickly, the more games you play in high pressure situations, you learn very quickly. MS’s comments were very kind and it was amazing to have those moments with him during the IPL and to learn from someone who did it all.
As a versatile yourself, how do you see the presence of Ben stokes to the side and what did you learn from him?
Stokes has been great for me. She’s someone I look at and admire. He achieves winning performances with bat and ball on such a consistent basis. To be able to play with him and learn from him is great for me.
Do you think you stick together in the bio-bubble for weeks on end and playing cricket is sustainable in the longer term?
It is extremely difficult, there are no two ways to do it. But, as a player, I do my best to adapt and leave those decisions to management who, we also know, do their best to adapt and provide safe conditions for all players at the same time. physically and mentally, while keeping the game alive during these times.
With players retiring due to covid-19 fears, is this affecting the psyche of other players who are on a series?
I think everyone reacts differently in these kinds of circumstances. It’s a very strange world we find ourselves in right now. Some people do better than others, and no one’s situation is the same. You don’t know what people’s personal circumstances are and it’s a concept that is often overlooked.