October 01, 2020
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Clearing The Air

'Aggression Is A Part Of Me'

Insisting that the jelly beans incident should not dilute his match-winning performance at Trent Bridge, the Baroda seamer says: 'There was no way that I was instigated or upset. I had a job to do and I stuck to it, without getting carried away by su

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'Aggression Is A Part Of Me'
'Aggression Is A Part Of Me'
India's pace spearhead Zaheer Khan insisted he was an aggressive bowler by nature and the jelly beans incident at Trent Bridge should not dilute his match-winning performance in the second Test against England.

The popular perception is that Zaheer, goaded by the attempted insult, dished out a great, inspirational bowling performance which put his side one up in the three-match series.

The pacer himself, however, feels that too much has been made of the incident.

"It was important for me to tell the truth," Zaheer said in an interview.

"I thought they had no business to do what they did and it was simply a natural reaction from me," said Zaheer.

The left-arm pacer said he did not get carried away by the incident and never lost his focus.

"There was no way that I was instigated or upset. I had a job to do and I stuck to it, without getting carried away by such incidents. I bowled in the right areas, and on that day, the ball did swing a lot," explained Zaheer throwing some more light into his magical bowling performance (9-134) that set up India's sensational victory.

As for the overall aggression in his bowling, the pacer said it was nothing new.

"I have always been very aggressive. That's pretty much an integral part of any fast bowler."

Asked about relations between the two sides, Zaheer said there was no bad blood between the hosts and the visitors.

"It's okay. It looked like things were dangerously close to getting out of hand but it hasn't, to be honest. Both teams have played good and aggressive cricket and that's fine. Playing hard is not a problem at all as long as the spirit of the game is not abused," Zaheer said.

He also said the fresh resolve and confidence in his bowling have been results of a lot of hard work put in by him over the last year.

"I have learnt a few things in the last twelve months," said Zaheer who made a comeback to the Indian team on the tour of South Africa late last year.

"My experiences have helped me grow both, as a bowler and also as a person. It's important to have good physical fitness. As much important is match fitness. And it's also important to maintain your rhythm and focus."

Zaheer gave credit of his splendid success in the series to his fellow bowlers.

"I have just played my part. The fact is that we have clicked as a unit. There are designated roles for everyone and that played a crucial part.

"As a bowler you got to realise that everyday is not your day. On the way you know things are not going your way, you try to bowl well within yourself and rely on support from the other end," he said.

"Both R P Singh and Sreesanth have provided me excellent support. On the other hand, during the time RP or Sreesanth were bowling well, I had to support them from the other end. We complimented each other very well."

Asked for his thoughts on the final Test, he said the team goal was to go for victory.

"It's a great feeling to be going into the Test 1-0. We are just trying to stay focussed. There's a lot to hard work to be done over the next five days."


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