Missing IPL Won’t Help Players Perform Better in WC: Ashish Nehra 

“If anybody thinks Bumrah or Kohli will perform better in World Cup if they don’t play IPL, then they’re wrong.”

3 min read

Video Editor: Varun Sharma
Reporter: Arpita Raj


With less than 20 days between IPL final and the ICC World Cup, the one question that everyone in the cricket fraternity has been addressing, is that of the “workload”. Will the back-to-back games in the Indian Premier League tire cricketers out before the all-important quadrennial tournament? Or, will players be prone to injuries during the fast-paced IPL?

Well, Ashish Nehra doesn’t think so.

“If anybody thinks that Jasprit Bumrah or Virat Kohli or Mahendra Singh Dhoni will perform better in World Cup if they don’t play IPL, then they are wrong.”

The former Indian pacer, who will be donning the hat of Royal Challengers Bangalore’s bowling coach for the next couple of months added, “I firmly believe that the more you play, the better you get. Until an XYZ is telling me that ‘I’m not feeling good, the World Cup is just 3 weeks away and I’m feeling a niggle in my hamstring’ or ‘if I play right now, I won’t be able to perform my best’ or ‘this injury might hamper my World Cup chances’ – then it’s different. Only a player can tell you. I cannot enter in someone’s body. And at times as a fast player, you carry a niggle here or there. As long it’s not bothering you. I have made those mistakes, and I don’t want them to make those mistakes. Not only as a fast bowler but as a spinner or batsman.”

“It’s all about your frame of mind, and your body. I’m there to help them, but I’m not a big fan of workload and all these things.”
Ashish Nehra

What’s Different in RCB This Season? Ashish Nehra Weighs in

Besides having never lifted the trophy, RCB finished sixth in the IPL last year. So what’s the franchise trying to do differently this season?

“Last year we had so many good guys who could play up the order but not as many guys who could finish the game. This year, a guy like Marcus Stoinis, a guy like Shivam Dube – We’re very lucky to have someone like Shivam Dube, a really great talent going forward. We also have a guy like Hetmyer, who can bat up front and also bat at five or six, because he can hit big sixes. So we’ve covered that base.”
Ashish Nehra

He added, “Our bowling last year was really good, but there is always room for improvement. We have a guy like Navdeep Saini, who didn’t get much of a chance last year. With the way he’s been performing in the domestic circuit, he could come in and do well. We have a guy like Nathan Coulter-Nile, who can bat at number 8, great athlete who can bowl up front, bowl at death.”


Ashish Nehra’s Coaching Mantra

Ashish Nehra joined RCB last year in the capacity of a mentor and bowling coach, but has now taken over the full-time responsibility of coaching the franchise’s bowling unit. Talking about his frame of mind ahead of the season, Nehra said he considered the job more as that of man-management than coaching.

“I’m someone who was playing till 15 months back. Since my thinking is really fresh, and I have played with these players so my coaching will be all about man-management, I won’t use the word ‘coaching’. There will be good days and there will be bad days, but I will stay the same.”

“The more I spend time with them... A guy like Prayas Ray Barman – young 17-year-old guy, good talent, leg-spinner, really good fielder, can bat also. So he’s looking really good. Now you have a guy like Washington Sundar who didn’t have a great IPL last year, but before that it was a great IPL for him. Everyone is not going to have the same kind of season, which is where the coach’s role comes in. I will share my experience with the captain and all the young guys. So, with the people who are doing well, I’ll help them in keep doing well. And the ones who are not doing well bring them up to that level,” he said.

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