I rely on my variations: Kalaria
Mumbai, July 31: A left-arm pacer like his role-model Zaheer Khan, Rush Kalaria also relies on his variations to dismiss the batsmen. The 19-year old used the opportunity to speak with India’s pace spearhead to understand the mental planning required from a bowler.
Leading wicket-taker for India in the ACC Under-19 Asia Cup with 12 scalps, the Gujarat lad returned with figures of 10-1-37-5 at an economy of 3.70 in the Asia Cup final against Pakistan. Now selected to represent India in the forthcoming Under-19 World Cup in Australia next month, Kalaria looks forward to spending his time preparing for the ICC event at the National Cricket Academy. .
Excerpts from his telephonic chat with bcci.tv:
Being a pacer are you looking forward to bowl on the Australian wickets and what has been your experience in your previous outing there?
As a pace bowler it is a dream to bowl on Australian wickets. We have been to Australia once and the wickets there were a little bit more bouncy than the Indian tracks. Also the ball moves very well, so we are excited to bowl over there.
How do you prepare in India for bowling on wickets like that?
We have a camp in Bangalore in NCA. The wickets are prepared like the ones that we will be playing on in Australia. While bowling on those wickets, little bit of change in line and length is also necessary. In India we bowl more up and we have to bowl little bit short on Australian wickets. So we must adapt to some changes and we are going to concentrate only on that.
You have been amongst the wickets, can you tell us a little bit more about your bowling and how you plan those wickets?
I am a left-arm medium pace bowler. I don’t bowl very fast, I bowl around 125-130 [kmph] but I move the ball very well. That’s my strength and with two bowlers bowling with new balls [it can be done better]. I am used to bowling good line and length and try to concede as few runs as possible and try to take wickets. And in the slog overs at the end of the innings, I use my variation which is my weapon. I bowl good slower ones. I just rely on my variations and that helped. I focus more on the movement of the ball.
What was going through your mind while playing against arch rivals Pakistan in the final having lost to them by one run earlier in the league?
Nothing! I just felt that the wicket was a bit on the flatter side so I just thought that I have to bowl good line and length at the beginning. So I bowled good line and length and restricted [the batsmen] and gave only 13-14 odd runs in my first five overs. Then, in the last five [overs] when I came to bowl in the death overs, I just used my good variations- the slower ones. I deceived them with the slower ones and got five wickets.
What was it like bowling to Sami Ahmed who struck two centuries against India?
He is a good batsman. He was generally good on the front-foot so our plan was just to keep him on the back-foot and we were successful. You can see that in the first match against Pakistan we gave 55 runs odd in some 10 overs but in the final we only gave 32 runs so we succeeded in our plans.
What are the kind of variations that you work on?
Variations in bowling - inswing, outswing, I bowl good slower ones, slow bouncers and yorkers.
Who is your role model?
Zaheer Khan. I met him about a year back at the NCA and talked to him and asked about his mental planning and everything and it has worked for me also.
Can you share a couple of tips from him with us that have helped you?
He just told me, “Keep your game simple. Don’t think too much, think in your [own] way don’t think what the batsman is going to do. You think about what you want to do.” [...] I didn’t ask about [deliveries] I just asked about the mental aspects.
How are you preparing for the World Cup?
Nothing too fancy, I just want to keep my game simple. I want to work on my strengths and prepare according to the conditions in Australia to bowl good line and length as the wickets are useful for the pace bowlers. So I just want to concentrate on my strengths.
How has coach B Arun helped you?
He has also played a major role because he was also a fast bowler. His experience also helped a lot. He has also taught us various types of variations on how to bowl in the overs at the beginning, how to bowl in the middle overs and how to bowl in the slog overs. Also he tells us about how to bowl to which batsman [...].
As a fast-bowler how do you work on maintaining your physical fitness and mental preparation?
Fitness is very important. Our trainers and physios work very hard with us. Our trainer used to [...] take us to the gym, the swimming pool for recovery and all the stuff that was required to help us remain fit. It helped us and we also follow it seriously. And mentally, I just visualise what I have to do and what I am doing, nothing much other than that.