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KKR’s Robin Uthappa says he is no more dependent on powerplays to score

Robin Uthappa, who has scored 272 runs in seven innings in the 2017 Indian Premier League (IPL) for Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) including the 87 against Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS) on Wednesday alongside skipper Gautam Gambhir, is positive that he has it in him to make it back to the Indian cricket team

ipl 2017 Updated: Apr 27, 2017 19:19 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
IPL 2017,Robin Uthappa,Kolkata Knight Riders
Robin Uthappa of Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) acknowledges the crowd after completing his half century during the 2017 Indian Premier League (IPL) match Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS) in Pune on Wednesday. Uthappa shared a match-winning 158-run partnership with skipper Gautam Gambhir in the clash.(PTI)

Robin Uthappa may have been out of the Indian side for long time but that’s not deterring the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) batsman from dreaming of making a comeback.

Uthappa, whose 47-ball 87, and partnership with skipper Gautam Gambhir, guided Kolkata Knight Riders to a comfortable win over Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS), feels he still has it in him to break into the national squad. (Match highlights | Scorecard)

“It (this season) is as important as any other season. It is important to keep performing and I have been doing that. The dream is to play for India again and represent the country in Test matches,” Robin Uthappa was quoted as saying by “The dreams are there but one can’t think too far forward. You want to stay in the present and give your best foot forward. I believe hard work never goes unnoticed. I truly believe my turn will come.”

The wicketkeeper-batsman has scored 272 runs in seven innings at a strike rate of 165.85, which happens to be the best among the top-10 scorers of the 2017 Indian Premier League. He also has three fifties.

Robin Uthappa, who was adjudged the Man of the Match on Wednesday for his knock at the MCA Stadium in Pune, said during the post-match presentation that this is the best he has been batting for a while.

“I have always been strong. I said to somebody a few weeks ago that I have settled down with my technique. I feel confident and I am enjoying myself out there. It is very important to respect the momentum that we have created for ourselves,” Uthappa, who shared a 158-run stand with skipper Gautam Gambhir in the seven-wicket win, said.

Not only has his batting improved but his glove work as well and it was evident during the three stumpings he was involved in against Pune.

Uthappa, who has been pushed down to No 3 in the batting, feels that he doesn’t need the cushion of powerplays to get his runs anymore.

“As a batsman, you lose out on the advantage of batting in the first six overs,” said Uthappa. “I have immense faith in my batting; I know I don’t need that kind of advantage to score the runs that I need to score for the team. I back myself and I am really confident and sure about my batting.”

Matthew Hayden, who was in the commentary box on Wednesday, felt Uthappa is the most underrated T20 player in India.

“I think Robin is probably the most underrated T20 player in India. He’s Mr. Consistent. He’s got such a wonderful hitting technique, baseball-like,” said the former Australian opener.

Uthappa is among the top-five run-getters in the IPL history with 3,662 runs in 143 matches.

First Published: Apr 27, 2017 12:50 IST