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Indian reserve list, Khaleel Ahmed delightes

pacer Khaleel Ahmed is delighted to be included in the Indian reserve list of the T20 World Cup squad 2024 after a splendid run in the IPL 2024, having picked up 14 wickets in 12 matches thus far.

The left-arm pacer, who last played for India in December 2019, has made a well-deserved return to the national team, earning a spot as a standby for the upcoming ICC Men’s T20 World Cup.

Khaleel poured his heart out and spoke at length about his journey to earn a place back in the Indian team and shared his thoughts on the high-scoring matches in the ongoing IPL season.

Also Read: Performing well in IPL doesn’t guarantee automatic T20 WC selection: Irfan Pathan

“The way the past few months were going and the way the IPL started, I had the intuition that something good would happen, said Khaleel on DC Podcast. “As the IPL matches progressed, my confidence continued to grow. I realised I was bowling well, and it has always been about moving one step ahead. Finally, when the name came, I was so happy, and it’s a step ahead for me,” he said.

Reflecting on what was a challenging journey, the DC pacer said, “2019 was a long time ago. Every day, at the back of my mind, I missed that feeling of playing for the country. Every time I used to watch India play, I used to imagine what I would have done if I was there in the team. So, every day was like a battle and these kinds of conversations were going on inside my head.”

Khaleel has represented India in 14 T20Is and has picked 13 wickets with an economy of 8.82. Despite the difficulties of being a fast bowler, Khaleel made a deliberate effort to participate in every domestic match following the 2023 IPL. The DC pacer highlighted the value of mental toughness in his path, saying that as cricket has always been his life, he battled for it day and night.

“After the last IPL, I took only a week’s break and embarked on this journey. I made sure I played all the domestic matches. It’s tough as a fast bowler, but I made up my mind that irrespective of what happens to me, I’m going to play all the matches.

I pushed myself mentally in the past year and have grown with it. “Mentally, you just have to fight for it, day, night or any time, because my life has always been about cricket. My thoughts have only been about cricket, nothing else bothers me,” he added.

“I believe this is the best moment for the fast bowlers to come to light. If a bowler performs in tough situations like these, he will be considered a King, and I want to be that King. So, this is what my mentality has been about the current scenario,” he stated.

The Delhi Capitals will take on Royal Challengers Bengaluru in their next match of IPL 2024 at M. Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru on Sunday.

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