I don't feel bad about things that are beyond my control, says India all-rounder Washington Sundar
After delivering a Man of the Tournament performance in the 2018 Nidahas Trophy in March earlier this year, a lot was expected from the 18-year-old Indian all-rounder Washington Sundar going into the 2018 IPL.
The teenager was picked by the Royal Challengers Bangalore in the IPL auction and was expected to play a key role throughout the tournament along with leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal.
Unfortunately, the season didn't go the way he would have expected as he was dropped from the side mid-way through the tournament. Washington is busy preparing for the Indian team's tour of England and Ireland after being named in the Indian ODI and T20I sides as the third spinner.
Sportskeeda caught up with Washington and discussed various things. Here are the excerpts
Q: Just before the start of the IPL, you were named the Player of the Tournament in the Nidahas Trophy and went into the IPL with a lot of expectations. Unfortunately, things didn't go in the right direction and you were dropped from the team. What was going through your mind at that moment?
To be honest, I was blank then. I believe everything happens for a reason. Missing out on the playing XI in the IPL happens because the XI depends on a lot of factors like the team combination, overseas players etc. binding together. These things tend to happen in the tournament.
Q: How was your experience of bowling in the death overs in the IPL, something that you had not done in the previous season or for India?
It was a good experience for me. As a bowler, I should be bowling in different situations. As long as I have plans for my bowling, I am happy. If you have a plan and manage to execute well, that is fine.
Q: 65 runs at an average of 21 and a strike-rate of over 170, your batting has been one of the biggest positives for you in the IPL. But, you didn't get chances to bat up the order. Your thoughts...
Honestly, I don't feel bad about things that are beyond my control, be it my place in the playing XI, my batting position etc. Going into the tournament, I worked a lot on my batting, especially for the T20 format. I knew that I would be getting a maximum of 15 balls in the innings and I was working on the way I should capitalize on those 15 balls. I am happy with the way I batted in the IPL.
Q: How was the experience of playing alongside some greats of the game like AB de Villiers, Virat Kohli, Brendon McCullum, Quinton de Kock etc.?
It was a very good experience indeed. Any cricketer would want to learn and get better every single day. I am glad and consider myself lucky to share the dressing room with these legends at such a young age. I look to improve my game on a daily basis and with these people around me, it was an added advantage.
Q: Now that you are going to travel with the Indian team, did Virat Kohli say anything to you about the areas you need to work on?
No, he didn't tell me any such things.
Q: Any expectations ahead of your first major international assignment, the tour of England?
Any cricketer would want to play for his country at the highest level and the case is no different with me. I just want to stay in the present, work hard and enjoy the game. I always trust my preparations and I am working on my game ahead of the England tour. I don't have any expectations going into a match or a tournament because it will unnecessarily put some pressure on me. As long as I am working hard and going in the right direction, I am happy about it and I don't think about things that are not in my control. I just think about things in my control, work hard, give my 100%, enjoy the game. If I manage to do these things on a consistent basis, other things will take care of themselves.
Q: How are the preparations going on ahead of the visit to the United Kingdom?
I am just doing what I used to do with some more hard work. I am not doing anything completely different. Indian team has been playing a tremendous brand of cricket over the last 24 months and the level has gone quite high. The players don't want to get stale. They are looking to improve every passing day and they want to get better in every series. The same thing applies to me. I am just looking to work harder and harder so that when the England tour comes, I am 100% ready.
Takeaways from the 2018 IPL...
I don't know about the biggest takeaway but I gained a lot of experience and a few things went my way. It was good. I always wanted to be a part of a franchise like RCB. It was really good to work with a few very good coaches like Dan Vettori and Gary Kirsten and play alongside the likes of Brendon McCullum, Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers etc. As a young cricketer, these things mean a lot to me. I am not sure about the takeaway but the experience was very important and the last two months were very good for me.