India Test opener Murali Vijay believes good rapport off the field with teammate and opening partner Shikhar Dhawan helps them perform better on the field.
“It’s said that for openers, it’s important to be good friends off the field in order to succeed as a pair on it. And it is absolutely true. Shikhar and I share a very good rapport off the field and that helps us in the middle,” Vijay was quoted as saying by bcci.tv.
“Although our games are different, we know each other’s games very well. As far as our personalities go, some people think he is the relaxed one and I am the serious one. But while batting, it’s the other way round. I am more relaxed and he is usually pumped up. We complement each other well in that way,” he said.
In 32 Test matches, Murali Vijay has six centuries — 139, 167, 153, 146, 144 and 150. The last one came in the first innings of the Test match against Bangladesh here which ended in a draw on Sunday.
“If I continue the way I am batting currently and keep scoring these big hundreds, I will be very proud of myself,” the 31-year-old said.
After a few scores of 140s and 150s, the opening batsman is now focusing on the next step — the 200-run mark.
“I am aiming for the 200-run mark. I have been batting well and scoring these 140s and 150s. Now it’s time to take another step and aim for a double hundred. To achieve that I am working on my fitness.”
“After having batted long enough to get to 150, your body tires out due to external factors like heat and humidity. That affects your mind. If you have the will to do it, you will. I have that will and I am doing everything I can to achieve that. Hopefully it’s around the corner,” he said.
He stressed that concentration was the key to playing such long innings at the international level.
“I am actually not a much focused person off the field and perhaps that helps me save all my concentration power for when I am batting. Concentration is the basic requirement if you want to succeed at the international level.”
“When you are batting well and are in good form, your ability to concentrate is what takes you to big scores. You have to seize that opportunity to go on and score a big one. Things are not served to you on a platter at this level and you have to make every chance and every moment of good form count,” Vijay said.