“I am not happy because I have not slept for two days and I was struggling a lot today (with my body). The way I would have liked to bowl, it did not happen. They asked me to play and I played. Anything, for the team,” mentioned India’s senior-most participant.
His uneasiness was the shortage of sound sleep that made him battle on a monitor that’s getting slower and a kookaburra ball whose seam can go tender after 40 overs.
“Not that I wasn’t happy with my bowling. I wasn’t happy with my body as I could only sleep for 40 minutes last night and day before the Test match, I slept for three hours,” mentioned Ishant, narrating his struggles with jet lag.
“The more you can recover (from jet lag), the better effort you can put in on the ground. There’s no better recovery than sound sleep. The sounder your sleep is, the better your body will respond on ground,” the lanky quick bowler mentioned.
According to Ishant, he did not even take into consideration taking part in the Test match, when he had sustained a freak harm.
“All credit goes to NCA support staff as they worked really hard with me. We never really thought I have to play a Test because my MRI shows I had a complete ligament tear, not one but two tears. People said ‘he is out for six weeks’,” he recalled.
Ishant mentioned he began his rehabilitation with an open thoughts. “I didn’t have any target that I have to play a Test. I thought ‘okay, if it’s possible to play, I will play but if it’s not, there’s hardly anything I could have done’. Because the way I got injured, I don’t think it had happened with anyone. But if you are destined to get injured, you can slip in toilet too,” he mentioned, as everybody had fun.
Asked when he felt he might give it a push for New Zealand tour, the speedster mentioned he bowled 21 overs in two days at NCA in Bengaluru to check his health.
“I bowled 21 overs in two days at NCA and I got to know I am fit and that’s why I came here and bowled one and half hours to check if I am alright. After travelling for almost 24 hours, it took a big toll on the body.”
On the scenario of this match, Ishant mentioned at first of the second session, it grew to become tough because the pitch had eased out.
“It was not reversing. Actually, nothing was happening. I was not holding the ball on seam and trying different things. Kookabura after 40 or 50 overs, seam really gets soft, so you need to come hard and hit the length very hard. I started bowling cross seam,” he mentioned.
“Actually, wicket became slow. It had tennis ball bounce at the start but when we bowled, there was no seam movement. Also for first timers, problem in Wellington is getting used to wind which is a big factor. People actually have little idea how to bowl with or against wind.”
With New Zealand forward by 51 runs and India nonetheless needing to get 5 wickets, Ishant is hopeful the group could make a comeback.
“We have confidence that we can make a comeback. That has been the speciality of this team.”