Dinesh Karthik

Dinesh Karthik has batted at No. 3 for Mumbai Indians and has been consistent with the bat © IANS

Mumbai: May 8, 2013

Dinesh Karthik, Mumbai Indians’ wicketkeeper-batsman has praised Ricky Ponting saying that the Australian legend has been the best thing that has happened to the Mumbai Indians.

Mumbai Indians are currently placed second in the points table after 12 matches. The team has not lost a single game at the Wankhede stadium. The team is without services of Ponting who dropped himself from the team. But within the team he has been very helpful and his experience is helping the young Mumbai Indians players.

In an interview to IPLT20.com Karthik spoke about Ponting and much more.

Mumbai Indians are placed at the second position in the points table after routing Kolkata Knight Riders by 65 runs. Karthik has had success batting at No. 3. So what has he done differently compared to the previous seasons? “It’s just the mental aspect that I have been working on in particular. I try to be as calm and consistent as possible. I have worked on my batting in terms of playing the attacking shots. It also comes with confidence, with more time I spend at the crease,” said Karthik who is part of 15-member Indian squad for the ICC Champions Trophy.

Mumbai has big-hitters in their ranks. How has their presence affected Karthik?” [T]here are some big hitting batsmen in the middle-order who can tonk the ball a mile, your role gets easier because you just try and get them on strike. When they are not around, you have the license to hit the big ones as well,” said Karthik.

Talking of Ponting, Karthik said: “He is the biggest thing to have happened to Mumbai Indians. He has this aura about him and he brings in a lot of positive energy in the team. Some of the things that he says in team meetings and some of the points he brings to the fore is really hair-raising. People don’t know about many things happen at the back-end but there’s a lot that happens behind closed doors. He is the key reason for us to be so positive and motivated.”

Ponting’s advice of “see the ball and think you can hit it, you hit it” has been “positive” according to Karthik.

On facing Anil Kumble in the nets, Karthik said: “I have a couple of times. Even when he does not bowl he is very serious about his game.”

Karthik has faced a little bit of Lasith Malinga in the nets. Said Karthik: “He’s somebody who doesn’t bowl a lot in the nets because he likes to preserve his energy and keep it for the match. He bowls a bit every day and sometimes I am lucky to get to face him.”

Will the IPL stint with Mumbai help Karthik at the international stage? “I’d like to think so. When you play in the IPL you face a lot of good quality bowlers and doing well here has improved my confidence,” said Karthik.