Home Cricket Exclusive: Big expectations ruin your mental peace, says Mukesh Kumar | Cricket News – Times of India

Exclusive: Big expectations ruin your mental peace, says Mukesh Kumar | Cricket News – Times of India

Exclusive: Big expectations ruin your mental peace, says Mukesh Kumar | Cricket News – Times of India


Team India and DC pacer Mukesh Kumar on his bowling prowess and Ishant Sharma‘s role behind his recent success
NEW DELHI: Pacer Mukesh Kumar has been widely regarded in the Indian cricketing fraternity as one who can deliver in all three formats. In 2023, Mukesh made his international debut in all three formats, and has fared decently without setting the stage on fire.
Excerpts from an exclusive interaction…
What are your expectations from this season’s IPL?
I want to give my best and help Delhi Capitals win the IPL.
It’s nearly a year since you are part of the Indian dressing room. What have you learnt from a masterful bowler like Jasprit Bumrah?
We interact a lot. I met him (Bumrah) for the first time during the Ireland series last year. It was his comeback series after his back injury. He told me ‘you execute your yorkers during the death overs only… why don’t you try to bowl a yorker with the new ball itself’. The essence of the talks I had with him was all about not letting the batsman dominate you. He advised me that the batsman shouldn’t be able to predict my bowling.
It’s also noticeable that your pace is increasing gradually. Any specific drills you follow?
Every fast bowler wants to increase his pace, bowl at 140 145kph, I am no different. But at this level, just bowling at 140-145 doesn’t give you results. If there is no variation or swing in your repertoire, then the 140-145 ball gets smashed. My pace has increased, most definitely, and I’ve put in a lot of hard work, lots of training to get there.
Are you looking forward to the upcoming T20 World Cup?
I am not thinking about the T20 WC at this moment. There is a lot of time left for that. I stay in the present. I have short goals, like how I am going to train for the day, how I will complete my yoga session, my meditation session… if there is a match the next day, I plan out how I am going to bowl to a particular batsman. These small steps take you towards bigger achievements.
I am not even thinking whether I am going to be selected or not. I don’t build up big expectations, that (expectations) kind of ruin your mental peace.
We’ve seen in international matches that your yorkers are quite accurate. Is that your go-to delivery?
Definitely. I have confidence in landing the yorkers. Right from the days when I started playing cricket, even in gully cricket, I just try to repeat what I’ve been doing since my younger days. Bowling accurate yorkers requires a lot of practice, and I work on it a great deal during training sessions.
In the DC squad, you’ve highly experienced fast bowlers like Ishant Sharma and Anrich Nortje as part of the setup. Do you take tips from them?
First, I want to say that Ishant Sharma is a legend! I don’t have to go and ask anyone else when he is there in the team. Ishant is very helpful. Last year, when the (IPL) season was over for us, I sat down with him and asked him to review my bowling. Whenever I am confused or I get stuck with something related to my bowling, I seek Ishant bhai’s advice.
Any bowling-related nuggets he (Ishant) shares?
More than tips, he motivates me big time. He gives me confidence and tells me that ‘you’ve performed in first-class cricket, it’s not for nothing you are in the Indian team, you just have to keep your standards high’. He always backs me. The belief he has instilled has worked wonders for me.
BCCI has recently introduced fast bowling contracts. Your thoughts?
This is a great step taken by the board. Now the young pacers in the country and their efforts in domestic cricket will be recognized, even if they are not a part of the Indian team or India ‘A’. Their efforts will also be much better since they would like to retain the contract. It gives a great sense of security to the players.


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