IPL 2018: Sunrisers Hyderabad’s Deepak Hooda ‘ready for any challenge’
Deepak Hooda’s 2018 Indian Premier League began with a bang when his unbeaten 32 off 25 gave Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) a thrilling one-wicket win over Mumbai Indians.
Since then, the Baroda all-rounder’s contributions have tapered off with figures of 5*,5,1 with hardly any contribution with the ball.
However, Hooda says he is not perturbed by the ups and downs in his career. “It is part and parcel of our game. For me, the more ups and downs I face it is better for me. I have played four different roles in four different matches. I am thinking that I am a floater. I am ready for any challenge,” Hooda said ahead of SRH’s game vs Rajasthan Royals in Jaipur.
In the 2018 Syed Mushtaq Ali, Hooda was the leading run-getter for Baroda with 226 runs at an average of 32.28 and a strike-rate of 150.66.
That performance earned him a call-up to the Indian cricket team for the 2018 Twenty20 Nidahas Trophy tri-series but he did not get a game. The 23-year-old Haryana all-rounder said the thriving cricketing culture in the Baroda team has given him plenty of confidence.
“The players are respected and there is tremendous support. There are good people in the association. They have been backing young players and senior players like Yusuf Pathan, Munaf Patel back batsmen and bowlers. I, Hardik (Pandya) and Krunal (Pandya) are well-matured. Baroda is a small state and we are the seniors. I have not played much, but the additional responsibility gives me confidence,” Hooda said.
Core bowling group intact
Sunrisers Hyderabad defended totals of 118 and 132 in two games against Mumbai Indians and Kings XI Punjab and these performances cemented their reputation as the best bowling side of the 2018 IPL.
Deepak Hooda said immense self-belief is the reason behind the team’s success.
“We were bowling very well in the last year and the year before that (2016 title). In the last couple of seasons, the bowling line-up has been the same. The core bowling group is intact and that has given the team immense self-belief. All 11 players have the confidence,” Hooda said.