The idea was to bat as long as possible: Axar Patel

Axar dazzled with a quick, unbeaten 41.  

Ever since he earned his Test debut versus England earlier this year, thanks to Ravindra Jadeja’s injury, Axar Patel has hardly put a foot wrong. Be it with his accurate spin bowling or lusty blows with the willow lower down the order, Axar has been one of the stars of India’s Test success at home in 2021.

Dream year

“Actually, this has been my dream year. The way I bowled in England series and now how the New Zealand series has panned out, in between there was IPL, so I can say that this has really been a good year for me personally,” Axar said after the third day’s play of the second Test against New Zealand.

“My endeavour is to keep improving and look at areas where I need to get better. All the hardwork that I have put in all these years have finally yielded results this year.”

India stretched its second innings to well and truly shut New Zealand out of the game. According to him, India was trying out options in the second essay rather than delaying the declaration.

“I won’t call it delay as there is so much time left in the game. The idea was to bat as long as possible as you don’t get such a situation every day, so the plan was to make the most of it,” he said. “We were trying to explore variation options. What if we have to chase on this kind of a track on the last day, trying to express ourselves in a different situation…”

Ravindra delighted

When Shubman Gill offered short extra-cover a regulation catch off Rachin Ravindra on Sunday afternoon, it was a mixed feeling in the New Zealand camp. The 13th wicket of the game was the first by any other bowler than Ajaz Patel. More importantly, for all-rounder Ravindra, it was his maiden Test scalp.

“It (the huddle after the wicket) was pretty funny because we thought he was going to take all 20. They congratulated me for taking my first wicket. That first wicket was very special,” he said.

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Printable version | Jan 19, 2022 10:16:53 AM |

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