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Shreyas Iyer is now wiser

Maiden ODI century in the first one-day versus New Zealand will certainly help him in his endeavour
Shreyas Iyer during the One Day cricket international between India and New Zealand at Seddon Oval in Hamilton on Wednesday
Shreyas Iyer during the One Day cricket international between India and New Zealand at Seddon Oval in Hamilton on Wednesday

Sayak Banerjee   |   Calcutta   |   Published 06.02.20, 09:26 PM

Shreyas Iyer is wiser post the ODIs at home against Australia last month and that has helped him improve his batting, feels his childhood coach Pravin Amre.

Dismissed cheaply in the first two ODIs against Australia in Mumbai and Rajkot, Iyer hit an unbeaten 44 in India’s series-clinching win in Bangalore batting at No. 4. And since then there has been no looking back for the 25-year-old, who seems determined to make the No. 4 slot his own.


His maiden ODI century (103) in the first one-dayer versus New Zealand in Hamilton on Wednesday will certainly help him in his endeavour.

Taking that Bangalore game into account, Iyer has played seven matches so far (across one-dayers and T20Is) and aggregated 300 runs at an average of 75. In these matches, only once has he batted below No. 4.

“So far, I would say Shreyas has certainly done well. You can see the improvement in his batting and I think that has happened after the Australia series. He has learnt a few things from that series and is working dedicatedly since then,” Amre told The Telegraph.

The former India Test batsman also lauded Iyer’s shot selection and his ability to adjust as per the situation. “He is treating the balls according to their merit and giving importance to the situation.

“Talking of the ODI (on Wednesday), Shreyas’s innings was key to India reaching 347. He’s taking bigger responsibility now that he is batting at No. 4 and trying his best to fit into that role,” Amre assessed.

Mohammed Kaif, a member of the Delhi Capitals coaching staff, also underlined Iyer’s ability to adapt his game as per the situation.

“Shreyas came on to bat at the toughest hour during the Wednesday ODI. The ball was moving then, but he played according to the situation.

“If he wants he can hit big shots from the word go. But he focused on spending time at the crease and stitching a partnership with (Virat) Kohli first. That’s a great deal of maturity,” Kaif said.

How Iyer is dealing with the short-pitched stuff has also impressed Kaif. “The way he tackled the bouncers was impressive.”

“People tried to pepper him with the short ball, but he has worked on it. Against Sri Lanka (in the T20I series), he tried to pull and holed out at square leg. Against Australia, Mitchell Starc bowled a short ball and got him out. But he has started answering better to the short balls,” the former India middle-order batsman said.

According to Kaif, Iyer is at a stage where he’s hungry for runs. “He’s in a perfect zone and in a stage where he’s hungry for runs. Not being picked (earlier) has also made him stronger and tougher. That comes with time. He never lost hope and kept working hard staying patient.”

Captaining Delhi Capitals in the IPL, Kaif believes, has made Iyer a “clear thinker” of the game.

“The IPL captaincy made him more calm and composed, and a clear thinker of the game. But this year, it will be challenging for him because there are lots of experienced players in the Delhi Capitals team... But it’s also good to have competition,” Kaif said.

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