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Karun Nair said it was only after he reached 280 that his partner Ravindra Jadeja started egging him on to reach the milestone IANS

Chennai: Life has changed in a matter of few hours for Karun Nair, India‘s second triple centurion in Tests and the Bangalore boy admits that it will take some time to sink in. “Everyone is being very nice to me. They have congratulated me. I think it will take a couple of days for myself to sink in. The dressing room atmosphere has always been really good and they have always backed me in whatever I have done,” Karun said at the day end press conference. Asked as to when he thought about getting to a triple century, Karun said it was only after he reached 280 that his partner Ravindra Jadeja started egging him on to reach the milestone.

“I think it never took place in my mind. Once after I crossed 250, the team management had certain plans of going after the bowling and declaring. So I think within the space of five overs, I got to 280-285, that is when I started thinking and Jaddu kept egging me on to not throw it away and get to 300 easily.” The 25-year-old said that there were nerves during each of the milestones on 99, 199 and 299.

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“Obviously, there are some nerves. You can’t be thinking negative at that point. You just have to watch the ball and just get over that moment. You just have to feel that moment, being there.” Karun said that he is currently overwhelmed by emotions which he is not being able to express. “There are a lot of things that is going in my mind that I want to do but at that moment, it just doesn’t come out. I think I will just have to get more hundreds for me to show emotion.”

Karun said that he feels sorry that his close buddy KL Rahul got out on 199. “Like he [Rahul] said we started playing cricket together. It’s just that we have been together since then. At every stage, if he has gone ahead I have caught up. Or if I have gone ahead, he has caught up. So I think that healthy rivalry is good. I feel bad for him that he did not get the double hundred but I think he will get one very soon.”

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Crossing the century mark certainly took away a lot of pressure off him, he feels. “I think it’s just playing normally. I think after 100 the pressure is off. You just go out there and play the shots that you can and you just look to hit the gaps. Once you cross 150, it is just playing freely like how you always do and just expressing yourself.”

Karun said that it is only the mental approach that changes while one approaches each of the formats. “Like I said before, my game doesn’t change much. It’s just the mental approach that changes. In Test matches, obviously you have a lot more time to get settled and play big. I think the approach doesn’t change at all. I don’t play any different shots in any other format. I just play the same way.”

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He did not score too many in the first two Test matches but did not feel any extra pressure apart from the usual bit. “There was no extra pressure as every game has its own pressure. I got run out in the first game and didn’t get many runs in the second game but there was no extra pressue that I put on myself. There is always pressure going into a Test game but nothing extra.”

While a Test triple century is special, triple hundred in the 2015 Irani Trophy was physically more demanding according to him. “I think there is a big difference. This is a Test match. A far bigger achievement for me if I look back. But having said that I think that innings was more taxing. I played a lot longer. I played for over two days there. Still the Chennai heat does get to you. It is just amazing moment in my career to get such a milestone and I would like to just go on.”

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Karun played a lot of sweep shots and attributes it to his comfort level with the stroke. “I have played the sweep shot almost all my life. You do have to practise a lot. You have to work hard at it. It is my go-to shot whenever I need some boundaries. If the gaps are open for it, I go for it.” The man of the moment believes that their bowlers could make full use of the footmarks created by batsmen.

“The pitch has been good all four days. And it is slowly deteriorating. And there are footmarks there so I think we just have to bowl well and get the wickets. Good bowling does get you wickets on any wicket.”