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An absolute team man, Naman Ojha of the Delhi Daredevils defied health concerns to join his team ahead of IPL 2012. The wicketkeeper-batsman has been flexible when it comes to his batting position and has adjusted his game to meet his team’s needs. He has also managed to put up an impressive performance so far.
Speaking to iplt20.com, Ojha revealed how he adapts to various situations, and works on his game and fitness.
Excerpts from his brief interaction:
On being unwell before joining DD, and how he is managing to stay fit
I was unwell. I had jaundice, so I was trying to [eat] less oily food and rest. Taking rest was important, because I had become very weak. So, I try and eat safe food.
I shouldn’t have really played, but still I took a risk and played, and it paid off. I performed well and now also I ensure that I eat the right kind of food and rest properly.
On adapting to the various forms of cricket
The four-day format is very important. If you do well there, then you can adapt to any format. Twenty20 cricket seems easy, but it is not; it is difficult. You have to remain focused and not get too excited and control your shots. On how he mentally trains for that
We have a yoga teacher who teaches us techniques of yoga and that helps
On who has been working with for his wicketkeeping
Kiran More sir coaches me for my keeping. I go to him and learn. He guides me. And I continue to work hard on the ground, and that is helping me improve. I am confident that I am doing the best keeping this season.
On which international wicketkeeper he tries to emulate
All the keepers in international cricket are good. There is MS Dhoni; Mathew Wade from Australia is also good.
[But] I haven’t spoken to Dhoni about keeping in particular. On how he adjusts to batting lower down the order after being an opener
It is a little difficult, but according to the team’s requirement you have to play [wherever required]. Try to perform well wherever I get the opportunity. It is different to bat up the order and lower down the order. When you are batting up the order, you can take some time [...] but when you are playing lower down the order you don’t have time; you have to play the shots, so it is a little challenging. So, it is important that you have to back yourself On what he has learnt from DD teammate, Mahela Jayawardene
Batting is always the same; it is the attitude that he has, which is very important. He plays all matches with the same intensity, whether it [is] for Sri Lanka or a Twenty20 match for DD. And he contributes the same things in the same way in the team meeting. I think that is important. These are the things that you have to learn. Otherwise in cricket, after a point, there isn’t anything that different. It is the mental strength and attitude that is important. […]
100 Deccan Chargers’ total – the second lowest by any side in IPL 2012 after Mumbai Indians’ 92 against Delhi Daredevils on April 16.
25 Number of dot balls faced by Rohit Sharma – the most by any batsman in a match in IPL 2012 along with Delhi Daredevils’ Kevin Pietersen who had faced the same number of dots, against Deccan Chargers on April 19.
4 Cameron White became the fourth captain to be dismissed for a duck in IPL 2012 after Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir and Harbhajan Singh. 3 Number of fielders to hold three catches in a match in IPL 2012. Rohit Sharma joined Laxmi Ratan Shukla and Angelo Mathews in achieving this feat. 2.50 Dale Steyn’s economy in the match (4-0-10-2) – the best for any bowler in a four-over spell in IPL 2012. Umesh Yadav and Sunil Narine shared the previous record with an economy of 2.75. 2 Number of times Deccan Chargers have been all out in IPL 2012 – the first team to suffer this fate. They were bowled out for 119 by Chennai Super Kings on April 7. 1 Lasith Malinga became the first bowler in IPL 2012 to inflict two golden ducks in a match.