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IPL 2021: When Kuldeep Yadav felt he wasn't the same bowler he used to be

New Delhi, May 12: India spinner Kuldeep Yadav says it was difficult for him to sit on the benches and wait for an opportunity to play for his franchise Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021. The Chinaman from Kanpur - who hasn't been in the best of his form lately - didn't get any chance in the tournament.

In an interview with the Indian Express, the 26-year-old said he too had self-doubts while sitting on the benches but he kept waiting for the opportunity.

"I did, sometimes I felt, 'what is going on?'. It was difficult times. Sometimes, the mind says, 'ab shayad woh Kuldeep nahi rahe' (Perhaps, I am not the same Kuldeep). Sometimes I feel, 'no, I am still the same' and I wait for the opportunity.

"There were days when you feel serving drinks and being on the bench is for the best - yaar yeh to best seat hai apne liye - and then but there are days you don't want to be in that place. I would think, I should have been there playing. I tried to motivate myself every time. I try to be happy and feel that I am bowling well. There was self-doubt somewhere. It happens with everyone, I started questioning myself."

The wrist-spinner said he started to focus on what others are saying about him and self-doubt crept in but then he spoke to his childhood coach and India bowling coach Bharat Arun.

"I started to focus on what others are saying about me instead of backing myself and not creating any doubt in my mind. I spoke to my coach Kapil Pandey and team bowling coach Bharat Arun also. One thing they all said that you just follow the process and everything will be in place."

When asked how it felt to him watching his teammates from the bench, he said: "No player likes to sit out. Everyone wants to contribute to team success. Sometimes team combination plays a huge role, sometimes the situation is such that one has to sit out. Such things are not in one's hand."

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Story first published: Wednesday, May 12, 2021, 22:30 [IST]
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