All-rounder Venkatesh Iyer (Photo/ IPL Twitter)
All-rounder Venkatesh Iyer (Photo/ IPL Twitter)

Can contribute with bat and ball, excited to work with Dravid and Rohit: Venkatesh Iyer

By Vishesh Roy | Updated: Nov 12, 2021 11:17 IST

New Delhi [India], November 12 (ANI): Left-handed batting all-rounder Venkatesh Iyer was the star of the show for Kolkata Knight Riders in the second half of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021. And the youngster has been rewarded for his performance with an India call-up for the upcoming T20I series against New Zealand, beginning November 17.
In an interaction with ANI, Iyer opened up on his hopes from the series, the excitement of working with head coach Rahul Dravid and the importance of performing well in three aspects of the game.
"As an all-rounder, it is important to take care of both the aspects, not just one. You have to work harder on your fitness and contribute in all three aspects of the game because fielding is equally important. I am not looking at it as only bowling or batting, I am looking at it as cumulative and I have to contribute in all departments of the game," said the 26-year-old.
"As a cricketer, you have to be flexible so I am ready to bat at any position. Whatever challenges are put in my way, it is a big honour to represent the country so whatever opportunity I get, I will try to make the most out of it. Obviously, I am an all-rounder so I do not mind taking the spot and I think I can contribute with both bat and ball. I am very confident about that. I am really ready for it," he added.
When asked about the excitement of playing under head coach Rahul Dravid, the left-handed batter said: "I have not worked with Rahul sir (Rahul Dravid). I am really excited and I am a big fan of Rohit Sharma, I have always admired his batting. Really excited to work with both of them."
KKR was down and out in the first half of IPL 2021, but the introduction of Iyer in the second half, changed the fortunes around as the side managed to reach the finals, where they suffered a loss against Chennai Super Kings.
In 10 matches, Iyer managed to score 370 runs at an average of 41.11 and he also picked three wickets. "Yeah, I think KKR has been a learning experience for me. It is very exciting to be a part of the Indian squad. Anyone who starts playing cricket always dreams of donning the blue jersey. I am very excited and really looking forward to what is there in store for me. I am looking forward to contributing for the side," said Iyer.
"A huge thanks to Bazz (Brendon McCullum) for giving me the opportunity to play for KKR. I think that was one hell of an experience. It helped me not only to evolve just as a cricketer but as a person too," he added.
Iyer also opened up on his admiration for BCCI President Sourav Ganguly, saying that he admires the former India skipper for how he carries himself.
"I am a huge fan of Sourav Ganguly. I tried to copy him in every aspect when I was growing up and I think the way he carries himself is amazing. I am in just awe of how he carries himself, I am a huge fan of his personality and cricketing skills, I really admire Dada," Iyer said. (ANI)