Abdul Samad eyeing strong comeback in upcoming IPL

He gained that reputation as a result of his outstanding performances for J&K and the IPL.
File Image of Abdul Samad
File Image of Abdul Samad

Srinagar: After experiencing a brief slump, Abdul Samad, a J&K-based Indian Premier League (IPL) player, recently came back in form with all-around performance in the JKCA final. He has since turned his attention to the forthcoming season.

In J&K and the nation, Abdul Samad is currently a household name in cricket. He gained that reputation as a result of his outstanding performances for J&K and the IPL.

However, Samad’s performance in the IPL previous season wasn’t up to par. Samad had to be kept out of Sunrisers Hyderabad’s playing eleven for the remainder of the IPL 2022 despite paying four crore rupees to keep the hard-hitting all-rounder in the team.

The lack of an impressive show may have cost Samad a place on the India side and was also recently not included in the North Zone Duleep Trophy side.

However, unlike any other cricketer, Abdul Samad instead of going into a shell and getting depressed started to work harder on his game. He has also continued to have a positive approach for which he is known.

The talented all-rounder has now set his eyes on the upcoming season and for that, he has been preparing hard.

“I was confident before the match as I was doing well in nets. However, it does help and boosts confidence when a player does well in the middle of the match against quality opposition. I am no different, it is going to help me as well,” Abdul Samad told Greater Kashmir.

“Jammu side thanks to our bowlers and batsman was able to dominate that match. ShubhamKhajuria on the last day was brilliant at the other end and it did help me to play freely and with ease. The way he was hitting bowlers was to treat to watch from the other and so closely,” Samad said.

Unlike his normal position of batting at No.5 or 6, Abdul Samad on the final day came into bat at the No.3 position after the fall of SuryanshRaina.

“We were chasing a small total and after the fall of the first wicket early, I didn’t want the team to get under any kind of pressure due to the fall of wickets in quick succession. I said let me go early and try to overhaul this small total as early as possible,” Samad said.

“The Kashmir side bowlers were bowling brilliantly and at that time even a small total would have looked like a mountain if we lose more wickets. The wicket was also not even for a bounce and it was tough to adjust and play your shots. After checking a few deliveries I was able to middle perfectly and was seeing the ball nicely. After that, it was all about playing your shots and bringing the total down as much as possible. With Khajuria also in full flow we were able to chase total in only 11 overs,” Abdul Samad said.

In the match, the Sunrisers Hyderabad star also took a five-wicket haul in the second inning.

“I used to bowl regularly in age group level events. Even used to bowl on the senior side for J&K but lately, I haven’t done that on regular basis. In nets I do a bowl and have kept myself always ready for the bowling,” he said.

Samad said that even a slight downfall or dip in form motivates him to work harder and he is motivated to do well.

“You learn from your mistakes and the same is the case with me. I haven’t been able to do justice to what was expected of me. That has motivated me to work harder and train harder,” he said.

“I daily train in nets for around two hours and try to the plugin in the mistakes I used to commit regularly. I have also been to Delhi to train under professionals and that is definitely going to help me in the upcoming season,” Samad said.

BCCI recently announced the zonal squads for Duleep Trophy. From J&K, the North Zone side included opener QamranIqbal while Samad and Fazil Rashid have been kept on standby.

Last season Abdul Samad did reasonably well for J&K in the Ranji trophy and it was expected that the all-rounder would easily get into the North Zone side.

Last season Abdul Samad scored 233 runs including an unbeaten century for J&K in the three Ranji Trophy matches played. On that basis, Samad was expected to be included in the North Zone side.

“Yes I was expecting to be included but then maybe there are better players with better performance than me. Can’t complain much and it motivates me to do even better,” Samad said.

J&K is going to start its campaign this season in the National arena with Syed Mushtaq Ali’s T20 trophy in October. Samad has set his eyes on that tournament to make a statement.

“This season domestic season starts with T20 format. Though my stats in a longer format is better I am known for being hard-hitting. This is the perfect setting to start the season on high and carry that confidence forward,” Samad added.

The 20-year-old J&K all-rounder in 13 first-class matches for J&K has scored 825 runs with an average of 41 and a strike rate of 111. He has also scored three centuries and taken six wickets.

In the T20 format, Samad has scored 733 runs in 46 matches with a strike rate of 144. He has the best score of an unbeaten 78.

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