Ever since making his return to the batting crease post his finger injury, Shikhar Dhawan has been the star attraction for SunRisers Hyderabad. And while the India opener has hogged the limelight, it is Parthiv Patel who has scored the maximum runs for the outfit — 293 runs in 12 matches.
Starting off as the team's first-choice wicketkeeper at the start of the sixth edition of the Pepsi Indian Premier League, a string of poor performances with the bat saw the diminutive player being dropped from the team for four matches.
While the failures of Kumar Sangakkara and Quinton de Kock forced the team to get Parthiv back into the playing XI, the left-hander has repaid the faith that the management showed in him.
Speaking to MAIL TODAY, Parthiv said that not only is he happy that Dhawan has been the top attraction when it comes to the outfit's batting, but also feels that his peaking at the right time has helped the team's cause.
"Firstly, we believe in playing as a unit. So I have no qualms that fans have showered so much love on Dhawan. As for my performance, I think peaking at the right time has been crucial as every team wants their openers to deliver in a format like the T20. I worked on my batting when I was dropped from the team and that has helped me. After coming back, I have just gone out there and tried to play my natural game and not think too much.
"Coming back to Dhawan, I have played with him for quite some time and the player I see now is a different batsman altogether,” he said.
While there is no denying the fact that SunRisers were considered underdogs going into this year's IPL, Parthiv feels that vital contribution from each player has actually made the difference.
"We have all chipped in from time to time. Be it Cameron White doing the trick in the Super Over match, Dhawan playing that brutal knock against Mumbai Indians, me scoring that crucial half-century when the chips were down against Kings XI Punjab or the bowlers shouldering the responsibility when the batsmen have flopped.
"When each and every member of the team is looking for an opportunity to win matches for you, the results are bound to come,” the 28-year-old said.
But Parthiv also feels that having the likes of Kris Srikkanth, VVS Laxman and Tom Moody has only made things easier for the outfit.
"Srikkanth Sir and Laxman bhai have been great mentors.
They have always ensured that the atmosphere is relaxed within the team. And then we have Moody, who is always ready to help,” he said.
With the West Indian players doing so well, Darren Sammy hasn't been one to be left behind and Parthiv feels that he has played a crucial role.
"He is a very handy bowler, who can also wield the willow and he has done that perfectly for us. When your foreign players do so well, it becomes easier for the others,” he revealed.