'Bat'rinath ready to score


S. Badrinath, the 32-year-old Mr. Dependable of Tamil Nadu cricket and “silent hero“ of CSK according to the IPL team's skipper M.S. Dhoni, has always been a name floating around the national selection committee meeting hall over the past five years. An international career that began in 2008 for Badrinath in the blue of the Indian ODI side against Sri Lanka hasn't progressed in the way he would have liked. He has only played seven ODIs, two Tests and a T20 in five years.
Badrinath, who led the India ‘A' side in 2007 that acted as a ladder for making his senior debut in 2008, finds himself in wilderness, nationally speaking. His name didn't figure in the India `A' squad which is now in South Africa. The right-handed middle-order batsman last played for India more than two years ago. Badrinath opened up on his comeback chances in an interview to this newspaper.
On making a comeback to the Indian Test side: I want to make a statement this season. It's not just with words; I want to do it with my bat. I want to do something big which will let the national selectors know that I'm here to perform. And that's what I tried to do two years ago when I was the highest run-getter. I want to give my best and play with authority.
Is it a make-or-break season?
Ever since I turned 29, people have been saying so. At 32, I'm fit enough to play, mentally and physically.
On why he is in and out of the national team: I would love to hear an answer from someone. I don't have an answer. I scored a 50 on my Test debut against South Africa and we lost that match. We won the next match with my having just one hit with the bat. I haven't played a Test since then.
After Laxman retired, I was drafted into the team against New Zealand but I didn't play a single match and in the next series I lo and in the next series I lost my place. After that I never got a chance. I don't want to complain or sulk saying that I haven't been in the team. I'm approach ing this season with my fate in my hands. On the stint at NCA this year: I wanted to work on the minute aspects of my batting at the NCA.
With the help of video analysis, I was able to fine-tune my game.
On his T20 & ODI performance: T20 is not my natural game. I have a different set of skills and I don't think stamping authority means only hitting sixes. Playing a crucial role in winning is important. I know that I'm not a Raina or a Dhoni. I have played a few ODIs for the country and a lot of List A and T20 domestic matches. I would like to be known as a player who can be known as a player who can play all the three formats. I don't want to be branded as a Test or ODI or T20 player. I have always strived to be a cricketer for all seasons. I have been doing well for CSK under pressure situations.

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