Ashish Nehra, who is currently rehabilitating after undergoing a knee surgery, has credited the IPL for restoring his confidence and giving him the chance to play for India again. He has supported the recent mushrooming of T20 leagues insisting that they provide a good platform for the youngsters.
Ashish Nehra missed the later stages of the 2016 IPL campaign after suffering another injury to his knee. The 37-year-old has since then undergone a knee surgery in London and is currently recuperating at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru.
“I was in London for about two-and-half months after my knee surgery and came back to India a couple of weeks ago. I am currently undergoing my rehabilitation at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bengaluru and have started my running and other training activities,” Nehra said in an interview with Cricbuzz.
The fast bowler has struggled with his fitness throughout his career, and he has regretted the lack of facilities, which are available now, during his younger days.
“Injuries are part and parcel of the game, and as a fast bowler, I have unfortunately suffered so many of them. It all boils down to how a particular player handles his injuries. When I was 17 or 18, we didn't have the kind of facilities which are available today. Players these days are more aware about their body and there are physios available to help which is a big plus,” Nehra added.
Nehra made a comeback to the national team at the start of this year after shining in the IPL, and he has supported the recent mushrooming of T20 leagues across various states of the nation.
“I am in support of these leagues. There are many who would say these T20 tournaments aren't good for the game and stuff like that, but for me personally, these leagues provide an opportunity to the youngsters to play alongside seasoned campaigners which will ultimately improve their game. That's not all. Those who do well in TNPL could get an opportunity in bigger leagues and make the next grade, which is playing for Tamil Nadu or even for the national side,” he explained.
When asked about what would be his advice to young fast bowlers plying their trade in the shortest format of the game, he said, “Firstly, I don't give anybody advice. I only offer suggestions. Twenty20 is a fast format and as a bowler you are always under pressure. One has to be smart enough as these leagues provide a great opportunity to showcase your skills. These days I see many coaches telling their wards to learn and then play. I believe it should be the other way round, whether you are 20 or 30, the learning process should never stop. The more you play, the more you learn.”
“When you do well on a platform as big as the IPL, you are bound to get noticed and that's what happened with me as well. There are so many international players who may lack confidence but when they play well in IPL. they revel in it. IPL brought my confidence back. Take the case of Bhuvneshwar Kumar. He wasn't bowling at his peak last year but this season for Sunrisers Hyderabad, he bowled well consistently and that helped him regain his confidence,” he said.