Raipur, Dec 2, 2023
India’s left-arm spin all-rounder Axar Patel has admitted that he was thinking about missing out on playing in the 2023 Men’s ODI World Cup on home soil due to a left quadriceps injury.
Axar, 29, was a late omission from the World Cup squad due to the injury suffered in the Asia Cup, with Ravichandran Ashwin named his replacement.
“You are bound to be (disappointed). The World Cup was in India, but that injury happened. For the first few days, I was thinking about it, not being able to play due to injury, especially when the team was doing well.”
“After 5-10 days, I was back to training and was doing my rehab. But when you are out due to injury and are not able to do anything for those 5-10 days, you do feel a bit bad. After that, I returned to routine life. I was upset, but it happened due to an injury; it’s not in anyone’s hands. It’s part and parcel of the game,” he said in the post-match press conference.
Axar made a return to international cricket via the ongoing T20I series against Australia, with his crafty spell of 3-16 setting up the base for the hosts’ 20-run win in the fourth T20I at Raipur on Friday night. He conceded to being concerned over how his left quadriceps would deal with rigours of the international game.
“If you are away from international cricket for some time due to injury and then come back, you try to prove yourself and you also have to look after your body. It took me one match (at a time) to get back into groove. When you come back from injury, you try to keep that part of the body safe. You are not able to give your full effort. It stays in the back of my mind.”
“It doesn’t happen in that way because the trainer already tells you that nothing will happen. But while sprinting, you feel what if something happens again to the quadricep.
But after the first couple of matches, I was back to routine. Now I don’t feel anything like that and the work that I put in the last one-and-a-half months, I am reaping the rewards now, so I am happy overall.”
With the 2024 Men’s T20 World Cup to be held in the USA and West Indies from June 4-30 next year, Axar stated the preparation for the mega event has commenced for the Indian team.
“Before the T20 World Cup, I don’t think India has a lot of T20 matches scheduled, maybe 9-10 matches. So, we have to plan from now and prepare for it as the World Cup is there in June 2024 and then there is IPL in between, so the planning is going on.”
“All the players have been told about their respective roles and in what position they will play. Once Rahul (Dravid, head coach) sir is back, there will be a detailed discussion. But we know what we have to do in this series, so there is no confusion.”(Agency)