At the peak or even when his career was on the downswing, Virender Sehwag took things head on. He doesn’t know half-measures and as mentor of Kings XI Punjab, he will be straightforward with the youngsters.
It was his clear thinking that came in good stead during his playing days, and on Wednesday, Sehwag was pragmatic about the new role.
Insisting that he is ‘happily retired’, the former India opener said he would imbibe some of his playing style in the youngsters.
“In life, we play different roles at different times. In cricket, you have to fit into different roles — you are a player, sometimes you become a captain or coach, mentor, etc. I will share my experience with youngsters and help the team hone strategy. The mindset I have, I think I can share the knowledge of cricket,” said Sehwag.
Kings XI Punjab need every bit of help to turn things around this season. Last year, they were at the bottom with three wins and 11 defeats. Before this year’s auctions, KXIP let go of skipper George Bailey and installed David Miller at the helm and added a few more players.
Sehwag, who played 104 Tests and featured in 251 ODIs, was never known to curb his attacking instincts, and the veteran added it was important for young players to know when to take risk to score runs quickly.
“The first role will be to motivate them and importantly they also need to understand when to take risk or delay. Maybe, I can teach them. It’s not mental toughness but just clear thinking. You have to react to the ball. Mental toughness is about putting up consistent performances for the team,” he said.
Sehwag already has a plan if his role as mentor becomes too much for him. “…commentary is always there. I am enjoying it at the moment. I had a good time doing commentary at the World T20.”