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HindustanTimes Fri,22 Aug 2014

Cricket

Rejuvenated Sehwag ready for the long haul
Amrit mathur , Hindustan Times
New Delhi, July 10, 2013
First Published: 00:37 IST(10/7/2013)
Last Updated: 00:40 IST(10/7/2013)

Dropped from the India team earlier this season, Virender Sehwag dropped out of sight after the T20 tournament.

But after a break, the body rested and batteries recharged, he is back. Having dusted his kitbag, and bat in hand, Sehwag is ready to hit the nets.
The master batsman, a veteran of more than 100 Tests and 250 ODIs, is keen to erase the unpleasant memories of the past few months. In this phase he had issues with his body as various parts complained, and his eyesight needed mending.

Worse, his bat lost its magic, form eluded Sehwag and the T20 was nothing but a fruitless search for the big score. During this wretched stretch, Sehwag looked out of sorts, often tentative and scratchy. Not the fluent player we know.

As India discovered new openers, Sehwag gifted himself a strategic timeout. Switching off from the game, accompanied by his family, he holidayed in the US, happy to spend time at Disneyland with his kids.

Back in Delhi, Sehwag is focused on the more serious task of reconstructing his career. At present, with summer cricket over and arrival of the monsoon, opportunities in India are limited so he is assessing playing options in England.

Till that happens, Sehwag is busy persuading his body to get into shape. Every morning, once his kids are off to school, he hits the gym with his personal trainer.

Nobody understands the uncertainty of the future more than a sportsperson, and Sehwag is unwilling to think too far ahead or worry about what could happen next. Like a hardened pro he knows how to ride out a tough spell, and the importance of taking it one ball at a time. But talking to him, one thing is clear: he isn’t done yet. Typically, with a brief remark and disarming smile, he provided context to his position. “What else will I do,” he said. “Cricket is the only thing I know.”

The writer is a Delhi Daredevils official


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