All-rounder Lalit Yadav played the full set of the first 10 matches of the Delhi Capitals in the Indian Premier League this season and was knocked out in the match against Chennai Super Kings. Despite his somewhat warm performances, the confidence shown by team management in his all-round abilities – he provides expertise in batting, bowling (off-spin) and fielding – shows that he has made rapid progress as a player.
After scoring a half-century for Delhi in its debut in first-class cricket in 2017, Lalit had to wait until February this year to score his first century – 177 innings against Tamil Nadu, including 17 boundaries and 10 sixes. To be sure, his stats with bat and ball in first-class and T20 cricket have been impressive – his batting average in 15 first-class matches is 46.72, his batting average in 57 T20s is 33.40 and his strike rate is 138.01. , And a bowling economy rate of 7.10 in T20. But with good performances in local cricket and a regular place in the Capitals line-up, this year has been more special than any other.
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In conversation with Sportstar Ahead of a win-win game against the Rajasthan Royals, Lalit Capital’s dressing room talks about the value of the team’s Achilles heel, Shane Watson’s inputs and more this season.
Q. You have been part of the capital set-up since 2020. Many say they have a great team atmosphere. What is your observation on the bonding between team members and Ricky Ponting’s methods?
a. I haven’t been with any other franchise. International stars are not treated differently here. I remember Ricky treating Rishabh Pant and me the same way when I first joined the team. Pant was the team’s vice captain at the time. So that I feel comfortable. Treating everyone equally creates a good atmosphere. During practice sessions and strategy discussions, the atmosphere is quite comfortable (sic). It’s a healthy environment; You are comfortable and can give your best.
Shane Watson joined the club this season as an assistant coach. What have you and others learned from them?
Discussions with Watson are about finding ways to stay in a better zone mentally. We have seen that even legends are only 40 percent successful in the days of playing cricket. But young people experience their bad days. Watson’s inputs have been instrumental in overcoming this trend and finding ways to move forward. He talks about his own state of mind and what he did during his career that helped him. We can only control the controllable. We have experienced these things but now for the first time we have someone to talk about.
With the new team the Capitals have been erratic this season and have yet to win two in a row. Is there anything missing last season or is it just a case of not finding a groove?
In the past, we had a group of players who knew each other well. They are a different team now like the other teams. It is true for every team that players need time to get to know and bond with each other. I think it takes a year for the franchise to make a new team. There is no shortage of talent in our team, but we need to be more consistent.
We have seen that when faced with pressure situations, some of our decisions have gone wrong. We become a little casual. We need to learn from this and be willing to be more consistent. Good teams are the ones who do their best from the first ball of the 40th over to the last ball, and sometimes they can’t even win those games because some unfortunate things happen. We need to be more consistent and follow the same procedure throughout the match.
Our team is very positive for the next three matches (sic). And that’s a good thing.
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Let’s talk about your performance. A magnificent 48 (unbeaten) was followed by some decent contributions with the bat, especially a quick 37 against the Royals. You have also made some useful contributions in ball and field. How do you evaluate your overall performance so far?
I started on a good note. Some things could not work in the middle for me. Now I am learning what I can do better. I am confident and will do my best in the remaining three matches. I don’t think much about what happened in the past.
You scored your first century in the Ranji Trophy this year and now you are regularly appearing in the playing XI for Capital. What are your goals for the coming years?
I work hard, and learn along the way. I just want to represent my country and be in the minds of selectors.
You saw Yash Dhul run for Delhi in the Ranji Trophy and now he is in Mumbai with your team. Your observations about it.
It has grown a lot in the last five months. Everything I’ve seen of him – we’ve been playing together for the last four or five years – has improved dramatically in recent months. He had the skills, but the way he handled the pressure [was amazing] – We saw during the U-19 World Cup semifinal against Australia, he scored a century after missing three matches due to Kovid-19. It shows his character. I am very happy to see its growth. The mental aspect of the game is what makes us successful in the long run. He is doing really well. I personally wish it to continue to progress and have a bright future for India (sic).