IND vs AUS 2017: Kuldeep Yadav Grateful To Gautam Gambhir For his Support
When Kuldeep Yadav made his debut in the fourth Test against Australia in Dharamshala, he became India’s first Chinaman in 85 years. Little did anyone know that soon he’ll become a crucial part of the Indian ODI squad. After impressing with his performance in the ODI series in Sri Lanka, where he turned his web around the Sri Lankan batsmen, he carried his rich vein of form in the first ODI of the Australian series where he picked up two crucial wickets.
Although he has always been tipped as a great talent by cricket pundits and players, mostly because of his rare talent, Kuldeep himself is grateful to Gautam Gambhir under whom he plays in the IPL. Kuldeep feels that it was Gambhir who backed him when he was nothing. He said:
“I shall always be grateful to Gauti bhai (Gambhir) for backing me when I was a nobody. He backed me when no one knew me. It has been a great ride under him and with my KKR teammates. I always wanted to play for India across all formats, but to channelize that desire I needed the guidance of someone like him.”
Kuldeep started his IPL career with Mumbai Indians. However, he never played a match for the franchise before being picked up KKR. KKR’s assistant coach Vijay Dahiya revealed in a story that Gautam Gambhir has always been an admirer of Yadav’s rare talent, and Gambhir has always felt that he is a match-winner for the team.
“Gambhir was very bullish and felt that Kuldeep was a rare talent. In fact, if you go by the records over the past few seasons, there were times when Kuldeep made the cut ahead of some of the more recognised names in the KKR playing XI. The reason was that Gambhir felt that Kuldeep was a match-winner. The moment we saw him, we realised that he is a special talent.”
“I am nobody to speak on their behalf (Mumbai Indians). All I know is that the moment we saw him we knew he was a raw talent who needed to be nurtured and that is what we did over the years. Gambhir played an integral role in giving Kuldeep that confident. It is not often that you come across such talent, but it is just as important to spot them and have confidence in their ability.”
Just like Gambhir, Kohli has also been one of those players who have been impressed by the Chinaman’s exceptional talent. When Yadav made his Test debut, Kohli was injured and was sitting out of the match. However he kept on cheering him from the boundary. On Kohli’s help Yadav said:
“He kept speaking to me and calming me down. I was desperate to play for the country and often you lose the plot and get overawed by the situation. After all, it was a dream I was realizing. But Virat bhai kept asking me to enjoy the moment and not think too much about the situation. He kept asking me to focus on my strengths and bowl in the right areas. It was a good feeling to have him egg you on from the sidelines.”
Brad Hogg has also been a significant factor in nurturing the youngster as both the players played for KKR. Yadav concluded by saying:
“I would keep picking on his brain. Our art is anyway rare. I feel I was lucky to have someone like him in my own team. It helped to get to see him from close quarters. I was always open to his ideas and tried to learn as much as I could.”
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