Hamilton: Shreyas Iyer now owns the No. 4 slot in white ball cricket but the success has come owing to his flexible batting positions between Nos 3 to 5 for the India A team, where he learnt the art of tackling various match situations.
Iyer scored his maiden ODI hundred but India lost to New Zealand in the series opener Wednesday.
Iyer, with six half centuries and a hundred and an average of 48 plus in 16 ODIs, has had a good time in the Indian middle-order.
“In India A, it’s not that I have to bat No.4 all the time. You keep changing your position depending on what is the situation. I kept changing (batting order). It’s just that we get good practice there and you face different opposition as well so you get used to the atmosphere,” Iyer attributed his new-found success to his stint with the A team while talking to reporters after the game.
“India A games have always been helpful for me personally because whenever I used to go there, I used to make sure that as many matches I got, I have to make the best use of it and the players and the atmosphere is also amazing. You literally have no pressure,” Iyer said about the team which is mentored by NCA director Rahul Dravid.
Iyer scored an eye-catching 103 runs off 107 balls but Indian bowlers failed to defend a target of 348 with Ross Taylor scoring a match-winning hundred.
“I am very happy (for scoring a century) but would have been happier if we could have finished the game on a winning note. First of many (centuries) I hope, so I would take this in my stride and try to make sure that next time, I finish on the winning side,” Iyer said at the post-match press conference.
The right-hander had a 102-run stand with skipper Virat Kohli and 136-run association with KL Rahul.
Iyer pointed out that initially he found it a bit difficult to bat on pitch. “It (ball) was stopping and coming. There wasn’t any variable bounce on the wicket. We just decided that we needed to take this phase and build a partnership,” informer the Mumbaikar.
“I’m really happy the way I planned my innings. I was keeping my patience and I had that self-belief that once I cross that certain mark, I will be able to cover up for all the dot balls I faced and I was really happy,” the batsman said while explaining his gameplan.
Iyer mentioned that batting did become easier in the second innings.
“If you see, the wicket had improved quite a bit in the second innings. The ball was coming on to the bat and the dew factor played an important role too in this game. They (New Zealand) batted really well, and you have to give them credit,” Iyer stated.
“If you look at it, 348 is not an easy chase but the way they planned their innings, with one guy anchoring it and the rest playing cameos. Credit to them for the way they scored, and it was a very good win for them,” he added.