Pune, April 17: Rajasthan Royals' veteran spinner Pravin Tambe on Friday credited his team for believing in his skills at a time when he hadn't even played a single first class game.
The 43-year-old Mumbai spinner made his first class debut against Odisha in December, 2013, after playing his first Indian Premier League (IPL) match for the Royals against Delhi Daredevils at Jaipur on May 7, 2013.
"There is something about the Rajasthan Royals that makes me want to perform for them. This franchise gave me a chance to showcase my skills at a time when I hadn't even played a single first class game," Tambe was quoted as saying by iplt20.com on Friday.
"They have given me so much love and affection that my love for the game has only grown over a period of time," he said.
Speaking about the Royals dressing room atmosphere, he said, "I feel very comfortable in this dressing room. Never have I felt alone in a setup that is full of international stars. They bridge the gap between the domestic and international players quite easily. I enjoy being here."
Tambe is playing the bulk of his cricket in the fast-paced T20 format. With age fast catching up and the needs of the game getting more physically demanding, Tambe is leaving no stone unturned to be fit.
"I have worked a lot on my fitness. I know I am 43 and I need to be in proper shape to play T20 cricket. I have controlled my diet and kept a tab on my protein intake. I am modelling my body to suit T20 cricket by doing short sprints and doing fitness regimes," he said.
"My training sessions involve routines keeping in mind the fast paced nature of the game and the amount of physical stress the body goes through during the course of the game," the spinner said.
Tambe credits his bowling success to a decent domestic season. He has bowled impressively so far in the IPL, picking up four wickets in four matches.
"My form in the recent domestic season has been great. I played in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy competition recently and picked up wickets frequently. It is in this domestic season that I have played the maximum amount of cricket compared to the rest of the years," Tambe said.