India in South Africa: Murali Vijay in ‘confident state of mind’ ahead of Test series

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first_imgIndia Test opener Murali Vijay is all geared up for the three-match Test series against South Africa starting on January 5 in Newlands, Cape Town.Vijay, who struck back-to-back hundreds on his Test return in November 2017, said he wants to stay focused.”I just want to go out there and whatever is thrown at me, I just want to play my ‘A’ game and do well for my country,” Vijay said after the practice session.”I don’t want to think too much about what will happen in a couple days’ time. I just want to prepare myself and be in a confident state of mind, which I am at the moment. We got some pretty good net sessions and some pretty good wickets as well. So, we are used to it. It is more of mind games than physical touch. You have to be mentally prepared to match conditions because in the match it will be entirely different from whatever you replicate outside. We will be up for it,” he added.Even though the pitches in South Africa will assist faster bowlers but the Tamil Nadu batsman believes the role of spinners will also be important.”It is actually a very, very important role because you have to support the fast bowlers as well. If you can bowl the spinners in the game, they can come in big time and get a couple of wickets here and there, so it will be a great help for us,” he said.Vijay has twice toured South Africa before but is yet to impress with the bat. In three matches so far, he has aggregated 176 runs with the best of 97.advertisementHowever, the 33-year-old is hopeful of overcoming the miserable run he has had in South Africa.”I am preparing myself to be a little more open-minded than I was last time. You cannot have a set pattern you cannot go into a Test thinking that you are going to leave so many balls. You also have to be in a frame of mind to score runs,” Vijay said.Commenting on the pitch, Vijay said: “It is quite green. I don’t know how it is going to behave on day one. For an opening batsman, the swing is more difficult to face than bounce. Personally, I think I am able to manage bounce more. If the ball swings around, it is difficult for any batsman to keep his shape.”After the Cape Town Test, India and South Africa will head to Centurion for the second Test from January 13 while the third match of the series will take place in Johannesburg from January 24.The two teams will also play six one day internationals and three Twenty20 internationals.last_img

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