Variations helped me a lot: Vinay Kumar
Aaron Finch attacked the Indian bowlers to set the hosts a formidable target, which Yuvraj Singh and MS Dhoni conquered by milking the Australian bowlers with two balls to spare. However, even as the batsmen stole the show in Rajkot, one bowler put up a determined performance to restrain Australia to quite an extent.
Finishing with figures of 4-0-26-3 pacer Vinay Kumar helped chain down the Australians who were galloping to a mammoth total. He claimed the crucial wickets of the dangerous Shane Watson and Australia captain George Bailey and later halted Finch’s blitzkrieg as well.
While speaking to bcci.tv after the win in the tour opener, the pacer said that he learnt from MS Dhoni to keep his cool under trying and high pressure situations, which stood him in good stead today.
Excerpts from his interview:
No target too big for India?
Yes. The wicket was actually too good to bat and the kind of batting line-up we have, 230-odd also would have been chaseable.
The wicket was good for batting, so how had you planned to bowl here?
Actually it was a flat wicket. I was just backing myself and trying to mix my variations. Initially in the first spell I bowled normally – during the powerplay. And after that I started bowling into their body or a little slower or bowling wide yorkers.
What did you tell yourself to come back into the game?
In this kind of format it is difficult to bowl and perform. And to perform you need to be very calm in the mind and that is what I have learnt from MS Dhoni. Whenever I get time, I talk to him about how he keeps so cool. Today also the way he batted, it was amazing and the kind of partnership he built with Yuvi (Yuvraj Singh) at that moment (when India was still under pressure and needed 102 from 53 balls) he didn’t panic. That’s what I said to myself before this match, whatever happens I won’t take pressure. I will just go and try to bowl to my strengths and that is what I did.
Your three wickets were very crucial, especially Watson and Bailey’s dismissals in quick succession
They both are very good players and they can take the match away single-handedly. Bhuvi (Bhuvneshwar Kumar) bowled really well to get the first breakthrough for India. They were going so hard at us and after that I just bowled to my strengths and got two wickets. That’s how we pulled the game back.
Yuvraj Singh once again played a match-winning knock
Amazing! It is very entertaining to watch his batting from outside. Luckily we have him in our team. It was amazing batting.
Sachin Tendulkar announced that his 200th Test will be his last. You have played with him too
I am very lucky to have played Test match with him and I am very little to say anything about him. He is a great idol and people treat him like God. Just sharing the dressing room with him is an amazing feeling and to play with him was great. I got his wicket twice and it is a great gift for me.
What is your most cherished memory of him?
In South Africa in the Indian Premier League I got him caught behind with an out-swinger. That was a memorable moment for me.