Stick to the basics wherever you play’ is Dhawal’s mantra

MUMBAI:Dhawal Kulkarni made his India debut in 2014. And in the space of two years, the fast bowler has played just eight ODIs and taken 13 wickets. His last appearance in the blue jersey was in Zimbabwe last year, and he is back once again for the same tour.

The 27-year-old Mumbaikar had a more-than-a-decent Indian Premier League for Gujarat Lions and he is eager to prove himself all over again.
Barring skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, rest of the stalwarts have been rested for this not-so-big-tour. But, for the fringe players touring the African nation, it is more than important to make an impact.

Mumbai seamer Kulkarni is one of them. “I keep my mind clear. It is an important tour. I don’t underestimate any opponents and the basic is to go there and perform and put all the hard work and efforts,” Kulkarni told media persons during the pre-departure press conference.
Zimbabwe Vs India Series:
Kulkarni had a memorable season with Gujarat Lions under captain Suresh Raina, where he finished fourth highest wicket-taker in the league, helping his team make the playoffs. “I think the difference was the number of wickets that I got. The hard work that I have put in before the IPL has paid off. I am very much looking forward to the Zimbabwe tour,” he said.
Known for his never-say-die approach, Kulkarni said his best performance in the IPL 2016 was against RCB. “That spell against RCB for me was very satisfying. I got four wickets, but missed out on a fifer. Though the process was to pick up wicket, you had to keep putting pressure on the opponents against a top side like RCB. I tried to pick up wickets with the new ball which I got,” he said.
What different did he do in IPL? “I think you have to stick to the basics wherever you play, whatever tournament you play in. You have to back your stock ball, and mine is to hit the right length and that is what I did with the new ball. Talking about variations, you have to practice those lengths. Without practicing, you cannot go and hit it right and deliver,” he said.
Skipper Dhoni, in the press conference, had earlier said that he had more confidence in the bowling department. “Really inspiring that it has come from the captain. That gives us confidence. If he thinks like that and such an experienced player saying this is quite motivating. I have always had believed in taking up the responsibility while playing for Mumbai because if you are not responsible, you cannot bring the best out of yourself,” Kulkarni said.