Agarkar eyes place in Test squad against Kiwis

Published: Saturday, August 23, 2003, 21:24 [IST]
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Bangalore: Indian medium pacer Ajit Agarkar on Saturday said his immediate concentration would be to perform consistently in the upcoming Challenger series and Irani Trophy and for inclusion in the Test squad against New Zealand. In a chat with reporters after winding up the morning session in the on-going conditioning camp for cricketers here, he said he was trying out different techniques to shape himself as a wicket getter. Asked whether he has shaped himself as an all-rounder, he remarked, "I don't think so.

I need to perform consistently and I am working on that." When his attention was drawn to the high degree of competition with a number of fast bowlers entering the scene, Agarkar said, "It is always good to have competition and it should be a healthy one. I will do my job and not worry about other things. As long as I place the ball in right place, I am happy." "Playing for the country is always great. I don't think you need extra motivation, Agarkar said adding, "It is disappointing not to play in the World Cup.

Anyway only XI can play." Commenting on his performance in the domestic season, he said though it was not a great season, but it was "a decent and good one". "I played for Mumbai in Ranji, but for losing to Baroda, playing in semi-final and final and winning the Ranji Trophy is always great," he said. Agarkar answering queries on the coming series against New Zealand, said it should be a very good series because they (New Zealand) are known to be a very good unit and always believe in attack. New Zealand side have done well in Sri Lanka last year, he said.

"The coming series is important for every one as it is an international series and everyone is looking forward to it," he said. When asked about the challenges that lie ahead for him, Agarkar remarked "I can't think of what lies ahead in the season. The priority is not to loose what is coming up. The Challenger series and Iranji Trophy for Mumbai is coming up. I am concentrating on that first.

Probably trying to get a place in Test squad against New Zealand." "Hopefully if I do the right thing, I hope to get a place in the Test series," he said apparently linking his performance in the Challenger and Irani trophy. Turning to the slow pace of scalping which he has been experiencing after getting 100 wickets, Agarkar said it is the wish of every bowler to get wickets and added, "I got 50 wickets from 23 matches."

He however reminded that the top batsmen would make bowlers work out and "it does not happen so easily". Agarkar said the current conditioning camp was very good and he was confident of adopting different techniques to improve his skills. He termed the fitness camp as a "perfect camp" and said guidelines were being offered to every player to improve his performance.

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