Dynamic all-rounder, Rahul Tewatia was given his maiden call-up to the Indian national team in the 19-man squad announced by the Board of Control for Cricket (BCCI) to take on England for a 5-match T20I series beginning on March 12 in Ahmedabad.
Rahul Tewatia was brilliant with the ball and the ball for the Rajasthan Royals in IPL 2020 – a batting average of 42.50 at a strike rate of 139.34 and 10 wickets at an economy of 7.09. After his selection in the national side, the all-rounder expressed his excitement and eagerness to share the dressing room with Indian skipper, Virat Kohli and is keen to learn from the established players.
“So far, I played against Virat Kohli in the IPL. Now I will play with him and share the dressing room with him. Cannot wait to share the dressing room with him and some of the best cricketers in world cricket. It will be all about learning from them and understanding how they compete against the best in the business and succeed,” Rahul Tewatia told ANI.
Finding a place and performing for Haryana gave me confidence: Rahul Tewatia
While the left-handed batsman became an overnight sensation with his miraculous knock against Kings XI Punjab – where he raced from 5 off 13 to 53 off 31 and smashed Sheldon Cottrell for 5 sixes in an over – however, Tewatia is a product of hard grind and struggle in domestic cricket as well.
The 27-year-old has to compete with the likes of Amit Mishra, Jayant Yadav, and Yuzvendra Chahal – all three of whom have played for India – to a spot in the Haryana team.
“Imagine fighting it out for a place in the team which has legends like Amit Mishra bhai. Then you had Jayant Yadav, and Yuzvendra Chahal has also represented the state team whenever he has not been busy playing for India. The level of competition for spinners in the Haryana team is one of the toughest I would say. Finding a place and performing for Haryana not only gave me confidence but also helped me back my skills,” the leg-spinner added.
He credits the Haryana Cricket Association and former BCCI Treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry for their constant and undeterred support. Once again, as Axar Patel and Washington Sundar are likely to be preferred over Tewatia, he will patiently be waiting for his opportunity in the Indian eleven.
“Yes, it can get tough some times when you have a bad game here and there, but there has been immense support from HCA. Not to forget how Anirudh sir has always instilled confidence in me. He was always a call away and ensured that I only looked at the positive side and backed my game,” Tewatia further said.