Axar Patel, the all-around player for the Delhi Capitals, visited the SG shop on MG Road in Gurugram on a hot Friday afternoon in New Delhi. The 29-year-old, who was wearing a loose-fitting T-shirt, training trousers, and pajamas, spent a lot of time looking through the store's inventory and trying out several bats. The Delhi Capitals have already been eliminated from the playoff chase, and their last match is on Saturday against the Chennai Super Kings.
Axar Patel, like his other Indian cricketers chosen for the World Test Championship Final team, would have little time to prepare before the championship game against Australia at The Oval. The talented all-rounder is still adamant about avoiding giving in to any “unnecessary pressure” before the important game, however. Axar intends to alter the weight of his bat since he is aware of the English circumstances and feels that there is enough time to go from the white ball to the red ball. Axar discusses his opinions on the WTC final, the Impact Player rule, and Virat Kohli's incredible century against SRH in the most recent game in an exclusive chat with News18 CricketNext.
Following the Indian Premier League, you will be traveling to the UK. What type of adjustments do you make to your bat as a player on international tours? Any particular weight changes?
When we go abroad, we do adjust the bat's weight while keeping the balance in mind. Since the bounce is so low when we play in India, I maintain the weight on the bottom portion. I keep the bat's form in this way. Regarding the circumstances abroad, the pitches give bounce, so I maintain the weight a little light and the balance in the center.
How simple or tough is it to go from white ball to red ball after two months in the IPL?
I suppose it's not simple to play cricket as a sport (laughs). Stressing about this change (from white ball to red ball) puts undue strain on you. The game and supporting your strengths should be the main priorities. The only significant distinction is that not every delivery can be pursued. You must make little alterations to your technique, such as having a concept of the off stump, which will undoubtedly take a few days or so. Overall however, we'll have ample time to implement the change. The rest of the planning is going well.
The Impact Player rule was implemented in the IPL this season. Does it lessen the strain placed on all-around players?
It depends on the composition of the team. There are certain teams where the all-rounders are expected to do everything, while there are other teams where their role has diminished since they are more likely to enter matches with a pure batter or bowler. A team doesn't really give bowlers much of an opportunity to settle in if they start the game with an additional batter.
There wasn't much support for the bowlers in the final contest versus Punjab Kings. However, you played a really precise and efficient game in that high-scoring match. What were your plans in that situation look like?
It was discussed in the squad meeting that the wicket is a paata and that we may bowl defensively. However, I believed that given the nature of the track, runs would eventually occur. So, my straightforward strategy was to carry it out. If I had thrown away runs despite following my plans, it would have been a whole different situation since there isn't much you can do about that.
Furthermore, I believed that if I approach the situation from a defensive position, I have already given up. I continued assaulting because of this. Obviously, there are times when it will work and others when it won't, but my recommendation is to make the most of the days when it does.
Virat Kohli got his sixth IPL century last night in RCB's crucial game against SRH. How did you interpret that thud?
Virat Kohli stands apart from other players because he excels in important situations. Over the years, he has shown to his squad what he can do when the going gets tough. Everyone is aware of his immense talent. He is a legend, and he demonstrated this once again when he faced SRH. He is doing really well in this IPL, in my opinion. He is routinely scoring runs, which is motivating for the younger players as well.