Team India batter Rahul Tripathi has stated that looking fidgety at the batting crease is something that comes naturally and is not something that he does intentionally. He explained that he is completely focused on the game when he is out in the middle and just reacts to situations.
Tripathi, 31, made his international debut in the second T20I against Sri Lanka in Pune, which is also his home ground. The right-handed batter replaced Sanju Samson in the playing XI, who was ruled out of the series due to a knee injury.
Sri Lanka beat India by 16 runs in Pune to level the three-match series at 1-1. Ahead of the decider in Rajkot on Saturday, January 7, Tripathi had a chat with the host broadcaster. In an interview posted on bcci.tv, the Maharashtra batter was asked about his intriguing habit of fidgeting around at the crease. He explained:
“I don’t know. It’s just that I am in the moment and I just look at what the bowlers are doing. Whatever happens is all naturally. I just don’t do it intentionally or anything. It is just that it happens. I am just focusing on the game at that time.”
Asked about the feeling of making his debut for India, Tripathi described it as a special moment, while admitting that he would have liked to have made a bigger contribution. He said:
“It was a very special moment for me. Representing the country is the ultimate goal when you start playing cricket. Was very happy on that day. Obviously, wanted to contribute more, but nevertheless a great moment for me.”
Tripathi was dismissed for a run-a-ball five in his debut T20I innings. He nicked a good delivery from Sri Lankan left-arm pacer Dilshan Madushanka and was caught by the keeper.
His dismissal left India in massive trouble at 21/3 in a chase of 207. Team India eventually finished on 190/8, despite half-centuries from Axar Patel and Suryakumar Yadav.
“It is a good challenge for us” - Rahul Tripathi on decider
With the three-match series level at 1-1, both India and Sri Lanka will go all out to clinch the decider in Rajkot on Saturday. When asked about the message the captain and team management have given to the players ahead of the must-win game, Tripathi stated:
“It is a good challenge for us that we are playing the series decider. The message is just that go out there and execute your skills to the best and win us the game.”
While Sri Lanka won the second T20I by 16 runs, India clinched victory in the opening game by two runs in a clash that went down to the wire.