Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
India pace bowler Ishant Sharma has revealed that he nearly quit playing ODI cricket after he was left out of the country’s World Twenty20 team following mediocre performances against Australia, South Africa and New Zealand.
“It was a setback for me when I did not do well for the country or when I was not selected,” Sharma admitted. “I think the one person who gave me confidence was my mother. At one stage, I thought I should stop playing ODIs. But my mother pulled me out of my negativities. Such support from your parents or friends gives you much-needed confidence. Now, I am enjoying my cricket, which is more important. If you enjoy your cricket and express yourself on the field, you will do well.”
After regaining his confidence with the help of his mother, Sharma is determined to impress the national selectors during the Indian Premier League (IPL).
“You feel bad when you are not part of the T20 World Cup,” he said. “It is a big tournament. But it is not in my hand. If I am playing Test cricket or wherever I am playing, I have to do well in those conditions and that particular format.
“I am looking forward to do well in the new season. I am bowling well. I am in good rhythm. I played in domestic Twenty20, bowled well, took some wickets. I am confident with my bowling and hopefully I will do well for the Sunrisers this time as well.”
Sharma also conceded that he has learnt a lot from bowling alongside South Africa pace demon Dale Steyn.
“Dale gives his plans and we set fields accordingly,” Sharma said. “That helps a fast bowler. It feels really great. I have learnt a lot from him.”
Sharma added that West Indies captain Darren Sammy has also played an instrumental role in helping the Sunrisers Hyderabad.
“When he was not playing in the initial part last year, he was giving ideas to every member of the team,” he said. “All these small things help the team do well. When we sit together, it’s not that we just laugh. We talk about cricket, about where we should improve.”