Eyeing WI series, Deepak Chahar looks to make it count in Vijay Hazare

Medium pacer Deepak Chahar, who made his debut for India against England in June, was overlooked for the Asia Cup in UAE.

Deepak Chahar was part of the India-A squad in England for the tri-series featuring England Lions and West Indies A.   -  AP

India medium pacer Deepak Chahar said he was disappointed at missing out on an Asia Cup berth.

Indian selectors favoured left-arm seamer Khaleel Ahmed and Shardul Thakur over Chahar, who had earned his maiden call-up in the Indian squad to replace injured Jasprit Bumrah for the three-match Twenty20 series against England in June.

"It was disappointing not being picked for the Asia Cup. But it’s a decision which you can’t help. My job is to remain fit and keep doing well, the rest is up to the selectors. There's the West Indies series (in October) to look forward to, a couple of good performances in the Vijay Hazare trophy might help my case," Chahar told Sportstar on the sidelines of Team Rajasthan's practice session at the MAC on Tuesday.

Chahar grabbed the limelight following his good show — in the IPL 2018 — with Chennai Super Kings (CSK) where he picked up 10 wickets in 12 games at an economy rate of 7.28. He was with the India-A squad in England for the 50-over tri-series, featuring England Lions and West Indies A. He was part of the A-squad again, this time for the four-day Tests against the visiting Australia A side.

“My job is to remain fit and keep doing well, the rest is up to the selectors. There's the West Indies series (in October) to look forward to, a couple of good performances in the Vijay Hazare trophy might help my case.”

"I played red ball cricket after nine months," he says before adding, "In between, I featured only in ODIs and T20s. While switching formats wasn't really difficult —considering I've been playing for a long time now and the skill-set doesn't change drastically — the physical exertion of the five-day format was a challenge. However, I'm quite happy with how my body responded." Chahar describes the time he spent with India A head coach, Rahul Dravid, as crucial.

"I was meeting him (Dravid) after two months, so it was a lot of fun. He's a very frank guy and doesn't push you to do things that don't come to you naturally. He'll tell you to back your abilities, and give his advice only if he thinks it's needed," he says.

In his debut T20I at Bristol, the 26-year-old returned figures of one for 43. While that was his first, and so far, his only brush with international cricket, Chahar 'can't wait' to get back to wearing India colours.

"The atmosphere in the dressing room was great! It never felt like I was making my debut. There's complete freedom to express yourself. For instance, Virat (Kohli) gave me the field that I wanted. Usually, if you're new to the team, you might be shy of asking the captain but that wasn't the case here. I thoroughly enjoyed my time with my team-mates."