CHENNAI: Tamil Nadu's R Sai Kishore and Sandeep Warrier have been picked as net bowlers to assist the Indian team led by Shikhar Dhawan for the tour of Sri Lanka that comprises of three ODI's and three T20's.
Ever since the likes of T Natarajan who went to Australia last year as a net bowler and got an opportunity to play for India in all the three formats, the very definition of a net bowler has changed.
Net bowlers are no longer looked upon as someone who tries to keep the batsman engaged on a long tour. But now they are looked as someone who can chip in into the playing XI when a player in the main squad is injured.
"Being a part of the Indian team as a net bowler is a great feeling. If shows that they have confidence in my abilities. I wish to utilise the opportunity and improve my game," said Sai Kishore.
During the last couple of years Sai Kishore has performed well for Tamil Nadu in white ball cricket. He has also been doing well in the TNPL. This had in fact helped him get a place in the Chennai Super Kings last year and he is in the Dhoni-led squad this year too.
"I have been doing fairly well for my state for in the last couple of seasons. My childhood coach TK Janakiraman has helped me a lot. Plus my current bowling coach R Ram Kumar who has played for Tamil Nadu and former Tamil Nadu captain R Prasanna have been guiding me and fine tuning my game," Sai said.
"I train at the Adambakkam Cricket Academy and what I am today is because of the academy. My performance for Tamil Nadu and in the TNPL first got me a chance to be part of CSK and now the job of a net bowler for Team India. I wish to thank all those who have helped me get noticed,'' he insisted.
The team for Sri Lanka is not short on quantity when it comes to spin department. The touring party has Yuzvendra Chahal, Rahul Chahar, K Gowtham, Krunal Pandya, Kuldeep Yadav and Varun Chakravarthy in its ranks.
"Our team has a lot of variety in its spin attack. Bowling along with them will certainly improve my game. I wish to interact with all of them in particular with the likes of Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal who have played in various conditions and tracks. There is a huge gap between first class cricket and international cricket. I wish to learn from them how they bridge the gap between the two,'' said Kishore.
The 24-year old will get the opportunity to bowl to some hard hitting batsman like Dhawan, Prithvi Shaw, Suryakumar Yadav, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Ishan Kishan and Sanju Samson.
"I have played against most of them in domestic cricket. It will a good opportunity to bowl to them when they are preparing for an international game. Bowling to them, I will certainly be able to understand what angles and speeds I need to bowl at a particular point of a game. It also help me understand what I need to uplift my overall quality of game,'' insisted Sai.