Mumbai Indians left-arm seamer Jason Behrendorff considers his IPL debut as an opportunity to help him secure a place in the Australian squad for the upcoming World Cup in England.
Behrendorff, 28, who hails from New South Wales, made an impressive start to the IPL on Wednesday by dismissing Chennai Super Kings opener Ambati Rayudu and Suresh Raina to post figures of 2/22 in MI’s win over CSK.
“Any performance here can really help me. My main strength is swinging the new ball upfront and taking some wickets, so it was good to be able to do that and keep in the selectors’ mind that I am bowing well. So, hopefully that will keep me in the frame,” said Behrendorff at the post-match media conference.
He remained open to the possibility of two left arm seamers in Australia’s squad for the World Cup. Senior member Mitchell Starc holds the better odds in getting the nod should one player be selected. The selection committee is expected pick the Australian team in two weeks time.
“It can happen. It is not foreign to have two left handers in the team. Australia have not done it a lot in the past but I don’t see why we can’t do that. Mitch bowls exceptionally well at the death, can also bowl at the middle and upfront. So, it might be a case if both of us are picked in the same team we can different roles.
“I might bowl upfront and Mitch may look to bowl through the middle and at the end. It would be quite exciting,” Behrendorff said.
He said the dismissal of Suresh Raina, through a spectacular one-handed diving catch by Kieron Pollard at deep point, was planned well.
“It was a serious catch, wasn’t it? (I was) very fortunate, to be fair. We set the plan for that knowing that he loves to back away and hit over the off side. Our plan was there and personally I was a bit little bit wider than I would have liked but Polly took the great catch which was fantastic.”
Behrendorff noted how Hardik Pandya and Pollard’s late surge while batting first took the game away from CSK.
“It (victory) is huge. Hardik and Polly just pulled us on the front foot going into the bowling innings. 170 was really a good score after we were potentially a little bit slow at the start. And then you had to take some wickets in first couple of overs and really put them on the back foot and did not let them off from there,” he explained.
“It is a great experience, really exciting. It was a good fun, good crowd out there as well. So great experience and to contribute to the win was awesome. I was not able to come last year. I was really excited to come. There is such a buzz about the IPL every time you watch it, every time you hear about it,” he said.