Canberra: Indian seamer R Vinay Kumar doesn't want to dwell on too much on what his chances of making it to the playing XI for the first Test against Australia are, and would rather concentrate on sticking to the basics.
Vinay and Abhimanyu Mithun will be in content_cnion for third seamer's slot provided Ishant Sharma fails to get fit in time for the opening Test, but for the 27-year-old bowling it's about trying to bowl each delivery better than the previous one.
"I don't think this way (that Ishant Sharma could be unfit and he could play at Melbourne). I try to bowl to my strength and my strength is to bowl wicket to wicket. Yeah, if I get a chance though, I would be more than happy," Vinay stated.
"I have been quite successful in my visits to Australia over the years. I've visited Australia four times - thrice with the Karnataka state side and once with India A. I got the 'Best Bowler Award' during the second edition of Emerging Players' competition."
"But then, all my four visits centered around only in Brisbane. That's why I have been speaking to Zaheer on how to bowl on these kind of wickets. Compared to Brisbane, this one might be different. Seniors are helping me out - where to bowl and which length to bowl."
Critics have questioned his effectiveness at the highest level as he doesn't have raw pace, but as someone who has 241 wickets from 66 first-class games, he isn't overtly bothered.
"I usually bowl between 130-135kmph regularly. That's more than enough on wickets which have bounce. If you are able to get the swing, it's more than enough for the batsmen."
Vinay feels that playing Ranji Trophy for last eight years has helped him grow as a bowler.
"As for ability in longer version of the game, I played eight years for Karnataka and took close to 250 first-class wickets. I don't think that's an issue. In Emerging Players' Meet, I got the 'Best Bowler Award' and next year Vernan Philander of South Africa got it. We both bowl at a similar speed and have the same set of bowling skills."
Vinay has so far claimed 16 wickets from his 15 games. He intends to catch up with Glenn McGrath who, in many ways, is his inspiration.
"He is a great bowler. He bowled in the areas, I try to bowl. More or less, I like to bowl like him, bowl in the same area, take it away and then bring it in. Even the best of batsmen will surely have problems."
"Most Australians are good batsmen, some are hard-hitting ones like [David] Warner for instance. But if you bowl in the right areas, they can't hit all the time. At some stage, you are bound to trouble them," he said.
Vinay was also unaware that Australians are having a batting camp in Melbourne from Tuesday to sort themselves out against seaming and swinging deliveries.
"I don't know about it. I've only come to know about it from you. But whatever they are trying to do, they are doing it for themselves. We are more concerned about ourselves."