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Washi: Have always dreamt of playing cricket in the UK

Thu, 21st, Jun 2018 |
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With the long term outlook of a 50 over World Cup in 2019 taking place in England, India's upcoming tour to UK becomes even more significant.

And for young Washington Sundar, getting on the flight to UK is a reflection of just how highly he is rated by the national selectors. The European sojourn becomes even sweeter as he has always considered England as a "dream destination" to play cricket.


Despite not having the best of VIVO IPL seasons with us, his 8 wickets in 5 T20Is in the Nidahas Trophy earlier in the year won him plenty of plaudits and gave the selectors enough reasons to pick him for the limited overs tour to the United Kingdom.

As he prepares to depart India for the 6 limited overs games, he tells us in an exclusive interview why he prefers staying in the present, observing seniors in the RCB dressing room, on wanting to establish himself as a genuine all-rounder and how he's gearing up for his maiden tour of England.


What has been the biggest personal learning playing with all these RCB superstars in VIVO IPL 2018?

The way different players approached different scenarios - it's always a learning. There were many professional commitments apart from the hectic playing schedule. When you want to learn something by just observing them, I think the way guys like AB de Villiers and Virat Kohli carried themselves throughout the tournament was a huge learning for me.


Having done well so early in your career for India, was there pressure living up to your auction price tag and the expectations of people in the season?

To be honest, I never thought of the price or anything else. Whatever was in my control I wanted to look forward to those things- and that was an opportunity to play in an exciting franchise. Definitely, expectations will always be there but it was important for me to just stay in the present and enjoy my game rather than think about the things that are way beyond my control.


By and large, Chinnaswamy was back to being a batting belter in 2018! Add short boundaries and a high altitude, how challenging is it for an off-spinner?

It's always going to be a challenge for an offie (off-spinner) in this format and yeah it was a bit more challenging at the Chinnaswamy Stadium. But I believe that whenever I do well in such conditions, I get the best confidence and happiness for myself. The harder the challenge is, the more fun and happiness you get when you overcome those obstacles and succeed!


Now that the world has seen your batting potential, would you still consider yourself only as a bowling all-rounder?

I've always considered myself a genuine all rounder - I love batting! I look forward to do well for my team wherever it might be, whichever batting position. Whether I open the batting or bat lower down the order, I just want to contribute as much as I can and win games with the bat as well.


Would you call yourself the long-term replacement of R Ashwin in the Test side? What does it take to become a successful bowler in the longer format?

I'd like to stay in the present and enjoy the things that happen around me at that moment. Test cricket is always a dream and an ambition for any cricketer, and I share the same ambitions. I'll just be looking to do well in the games I play in whichever part of the world and look to keep performing.


Your bowling revolves around accuracy in line and length. Any special plans to bowl in the UK where it isn't expected to turn in the early season?

Lengths and pace variation will be very important in the UK. I've been working well on that of late in practice and hopefully, I perform exceedingly well in a place where I've always dreamt of playing cricket.

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