Punjab’s Kaul retains the hope

Deepankar Sharda

Today News Online Service

Chandigarh, May 24

With several of India’s pace bowlers suffering injuries and having to drop out in recent times, Punjab’s Siddarth Kaul, who has found success at the India A and domestic levels, has been hoping to make a comeback.

Kaul, 31, rues that the Ranji Trophy season could not be held due to the Covid-19 pandemic, robbing him of an opportunity to impress the selectors. However, he believes that he has got a record that should attract their attention.

“I don’t know what to say. My performance should speak for me,” Kaul said about his hopes of adding to the six matches — 3 ODIs, 3 T20Is — he has played for India. “From bowling middle overs to dying overs and from maintaining a decent average to claiming hat-tricks, it’s all in the record books.”

Kaul does have impressive accomplishments, but it seems other bowlers have moved up the pecking order.

“Perhaps there are big things waiting for me. My ultimate aim is to play for India in all three formats,” said Kaul. “I may not be good at interacting with people but I talk better with a ball on the field. I can’t ask anyone to pick me.”

Punjab’s all-time 3rd

The third most successful bowler for Punjab in Ranji Trophy — with 207 wickets in 53 matches — Kaul has four international wickets to his name, all in T20Is. He made it to the Indian team after good performances in two consecutive IPL seasons — 16 wickets in 10 matches (2017) and 21 wickets in 17 matches (2018).

Kaul, who picked up 27 wickets in the last Ranji Trophy season, has done well in the 50-over Vijay Hazare Trophy tournament, with 16 wickets in 2020 and 14 in 2021.

“If IPL is the base to assess performance, I have claimed 53 wickets in 46 matches… In First-Class games, the tally is 232 wickets in 63 matches, and I have 169 wickets from 95 List A matches and 113 wickets from 114 T20 matches,” Kaul says, numbers at the ready. “I have bowled well on spinning tracks and also claimed hat-tricks, including the recent one against Karnataka in the Syed Mushtaq Trophy.”

How does he rate his chances of getting back into the India squad? “I will continue pushing. I will keep myself in the hunt with more and more wickets in the domestic circuit. At the end of the day, I just want to give my best at whatever level I’m playing,” said Kaul.

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