Talented India seamer Bhuvneshwar Kumar is disappointed that Sachin Tendulkar has retired from One-Day Internationals but said he can realise his dream of playing alongside the veteran batsman in the longer format of the game.
"Yes, that's a big disappointment. When I saw his retirement news on the TV, I thought that I've lost the chance to play alongside him. But then I thought that I still have a chance to play with him in Tests. I hope that happens," said Kumar, who made a sensational debut for India in the first Twenty20 International against Pakistan on Tuesday.
The 22-year-old Bhuvneshwar returned with impressive bowling figures of 4-0-9-3 in the first T20 game in Bangalore which India lost by five wickets.Bhuvneshwar said that his first match in India colours could have been a dream debut had India emerged victorious.
"It would have been a dream debut if we had won. It was a good debut, scoring six crucial runs at the death, picking up three wickets for nine runs and taking a catch. It would have been perfect had we won in the end," he said on the eve of the second Twenty20 match here tomorrow.
Asked about his fine performance in Bangalore, he said the Indian Premier League has helped him to hone his skills in the T20 format.
"I tried to do what I have been doing at the domestic level and the IPL, and that's what the seniors suggested me to do. You can say that the time spent with RCB did help me in terms of knowing what kind of Twenty20 wicket this is," Bhuvneshwar said.
"Overall, the IPL experience was useful because of what I learnt from the international players about bowling in T20s," he said.
Bhuvneshwar thanked captain Mehendra Singh Dhoni for supporting and standing behind him in his debut match. "I have always watched him (Dhoni) on TV and thought what a good captain he is.
Before this game he told me that although I am playing for India and it's a big thing, at the end of the day it's just another match. You have played a lot of cricket matches and this is one of them.
He supported me right through my spell as well," he said.
Bhuvneshwar said he was happy and at the same time nervous when he walked out for the first time in India jersey. "They were normal debut nerves and nothing to do with the fact that it was against Pakistan. Once I entered the field, I was pretty normal," he said.
Asked about his bowling idol, Bhuvneshwar said, "Praveen Kumar and I are from the same city. I have been watching him since a long time and I think we're very similar bowlers. I look up to him as my mentor. Like him, my main weapon is swing bowling and I rely a lot on it especially in helpful conditions."