Cricket: Resurgent Jeet Raval goes back to basics as he eyes Blackcaps return

Blackcaps batsman Jeet Raval is putting a positive spin on one of the most difficult periods of his career.

Raval admitted he found himself in a rut earlier this summer,  where poor scores saw him dropped from the test team in Australia.

The 31-year-old has since changed his approach to batting, which sees him as one of the Auckland Aces leading runscorers ahead of Sunday's domestic one day final.

After an England test series where he averaged just 8 in three innings, he went over to Australia as a man under pressure

Scores of one in both innings in the first test saw him swiftly dropped. He now admits he lost perspective on why he played the game.

"You get caught in this rut," Raval told Newshub. "And then you try to make it really hard and you try harder and harder every day, as opposed to letting things go and taking time away." 

Raval took that time away and went back to play club cricket in Auckland.

He's since returned to the one day team for the Aces and has averaged over fifty in five innings.

"You come back and all of a sudden things start falling in place. 

"I'm not saying this is the end of it, but it's given me a good perspective on how I want to play my cricket moving forward….I'm in a good space."

Acting Auckland coach Doug Wilson has been impressed with How Raval has returned to the domestic scene.

"He came back really refreshed as well," Wilson said. "Obviously pretty determined to push for white-ball selection in the Blackcaps."

Raval has only ever really been considered for the longer format of the game. His patience at the crease was one of his strengths, but the time he took away from the game after the Australian series made him rethink that.

'It's all about finding why I play cricket and it was all about looking to score runs.

"Sometimes I can get too technical or get worried about spending too much time in the middle, as opposed to scoring runs and, in this game, as a batter, it's about scoring runs.

"When you start scoring runs you figure out what works for you and where you can go with this cricket.

"I'm excited about this next chapter and hopefully I can become a better player and better person from this experience."

Raval will take that mentality in tomorrow's final against the Otago Volts.

The test team to face India will be named on Monday and Raval's not sure whether he can expect to be in that side.

"Getting caught up in expectations is not what it's all about. It's all about what's in front of you and playing to the situation."

It's all part of Raval's fresh approach, as he looks to bat his way back into Blackcaps contention.

 

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