Sreesanth's seven-year ban from cricket is close to its end and the Indian pacer has said that he is "raring to go" as he prepares for a return to the sport. Kerala coach Tinu Yohannan had said that Sreesanth will be considered for selection, provided he proves fitness as the BCCI ends in September.
Sreesanth was given a lifetime ban alongside Rajasthan Royals teammate Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan for indulging in alleged spot-fixing in the Indian Premier League. However, the speedster's ban was reduced to seven years in 2019. The timeline for the ban will complete on September 13.
"The official announcement will come in September, I am just continuing with my training. Everybody is being supportive from the Secretary to Director General, everybody has been supportive, selectors and coach want me in the team," Sreesanth told ANI in an interview.
"I am just training, let's see, I am fit and raring to go. You will see me playing, I am just eagerly waiting to go forward. It's very, very clear I will be in the squad, the official announcement will be in September so I have to follow the rules and do things accordingly," he added.
Sreesanth admitted that cricket has changed significantly since the last time he took the field. The bowler last played for India in the Test series in England in 2011. For Kerala, he last made an appearance in March 2013 in the semifinal of the Vijay Hazare Trophy. (Jayawardene ridicules former SL sports minister's claims that 2011 WC final was sold)
"I don't look at this as one of my second innings, seven years I have missed and cricket has changed a lot from the last time when I was playing. I still remember all the lovely days when I represented my country," he said.
Sreesanth's return will also coincide with a series of changes in cricket, following the coronavirus pandemic. One of the biggest changes is the ban on the use of saliva for bowlers and fielders. However, Sreesanth feels that the change isn't that big.
"It's being blown out of proportion, you can use sweat as well, you have to take care, you have to respect every decision the association is taking, it all comes down to skills. When I played county cricket, I learned that you just have to maintain the ball, it's more of keeping the ball dry," Sreesanth said.
"I am very happy in one way, there is a positive that only the skilful bowlers can now perform. You need to move on and adapt, you have to adapt if you want to become successful, the need of the hour is to adapt. It's about practice, and players will eventually get used to it," he added.