Chahar: 'We have to be mentally strong'

With Hardik Pandya injuring himself in the Asia Cup match against Pakistan, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has named Deepak Chahar as a replacement.

A medium fast bowler, Deepak Chahar can come in handy with the bat as well.   -  PTI

Rajasthan pacer Deepak Chahar was banking on a good Vijay Hazare Trophy to break into the Indian team, but a re-call has come even before he finished playing his first match in the domestic tournament.

With Hardik Pandya injuring himself in the Asia Cup match against Pakistan, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has named Chahar as a replacement.

The Rajasthan pacer, who was eyeing a recall for the West Indies series initially, told Sportstar that all he wanted to do was to keep himself fit and not worry about selection. “The most important is I am fit. What is in my hand is being fit and being available for every selection,” he said.

READ: Hardik, Axar, Shardul out of Asia Cup

Snubbed initially for the Asia Cup after being drafted into the Indian team for the T20 series against England last month, Chahar said he had no reason to be sad or lose faith in his capabilities. “I was confident of selection. One cannot be sad when ignored for a series. If a player misses out on IPL or Ranji Trophy, which happens once a year, missing out gives you a sad feeling. But, once you are on the India radar, selections and tours happen very frequently. So, you are always under the selectors’ eye sight,” Chahar explained.

Chahar said playing for India is all about confidence. “IPL gives you the skill set to play at the highest level. Once you get there, it is all about being confident. We have to be mentally strong and must be able to handle pressure. As a player, one needs to know and back their strengths. That’s the most important,” he added.

The 26-year-old said playing alongside Mahendra Singh Dhoni was a confidence booster. “More than on the field, I have learnt a lot off the field from Dhoni. I spent a lot of time in his room as I had adjacent rooms during the IPL. It is very interesting to note how he thinks about cricket, off the field.

“It is heartening to know that I have Dhoni’s backup. He has a lot of confidence in me. Just before the IPL, Dhoni had actually told someone that I will play all matches. It is a huge thing to have the skipper’s confidence. He supports juniors and that is what a junior need. It gives us a special feeling when a player like him backs you and gives the confidence that I can play for the country,” he added.