The initial phase of Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 was extremely tough for Delhi Capitals spinner Axar Patel. He had tested positive for Covid before the tournament kicked off. His sour health kept didn’t let him play the first four matches for Delhi. However, when he returned in the fifth encounter against Sunrisers Hyderabad in Chennai, he stole the show with his terrific bowling in the Super Over.
The match was tied after Sunrisers posted 159/7 while chasing. While the DC think tank was busy discussing who would bowl the Super Over, Axar himself approached captain Rishabh Pant and expressed confidence that he could do the job without conceding more runs.
While speaking in an interview with India TV, the left-arm spinner said that he was confident of doing a good job because the Chennai pitch was assisting the spinner.
“Because the pitch was aiding spinners, I thought I or Ashwin would be bowling the Super Over. But then I saw the think tank gathered around Avesh Khan. When I asked (Steve) Smith, he told me that Avesh will bowl the Super Over. I was confident that I could do better than Avesh under the conditions. I then went up to Rishabh (Pant) and said that I can bowl the Super Over without conceding many runs. Pant consulted coach Ricky (Ponting), and he gave the captain the freedom to take the final call,” Axar told India TV.
“I knew I could either become a hero or a zero. For a few moments, my heartbeat did increase. But I had the confidence and mental strength to pull me through,” he added.
Axar also spoke about his battle against Covid-19. The spinner said that he was worried about how would he perform once he returns post-recovery.
“Many thoughts were going through my mind. I was in good form and then suddenly this COVID thing happened. I was also worried if COVID would affect my rhythm and how my body would respond after the battle with the virus,” said Axar.
“In the first match itself, my COVID recovery was put to test, as I bowled the Super Over against Sunrisers Hyderabad. After that, I became more confident as my rhythm was intact.”