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Last Updated: Wednesday, 8 March 2006, 12:08 GMT
Strictly come Sreesanth
By Ayanjit Sen at Mohali

It is not surprising to see fast bowler Sri Sreesanth break into a jig of delight each time he takes a wicket.

Sri Sreesanth
Sreesanth celebrates a wicket in Nagpur

As a former national break dance champion, he is the Darren Gough of the Indian team.

But unlike Gough, who won the BBC's Strictly Come Dancing with partner Lilia Kopilova, cricket boots have now replaced his dancing shoes.

"Dancing was my hobby during my school days. I still dance sometimes with friends at parties, but that is only for pleasure.

"I concentrate entirely on cricket now - the place of performance has changed," said Sreesanth, who picks pop star Michael Jackson and Indian dancers Prabhu Deva and Javed Jaffrey as his favourite movers and shakers.

The 22-year-old was first called into the Indian squad for the one-day series against Sri Lanka last October.

He kept his place for the recent tour to Pakistan and although six wickets in five games at a cost of 48 each was nothing special, the selectors saw enough to promote him to the Test side to face England in Nagpur.

Sreesanth has the nickname 'Prince of Hat-tricks' because of his exploits at club and first-class level.

"Hopefully I can replicate that in my international career also," he said.

A hat-trick against England might be too much to hope for in his first Test series.

But he certainly made their batsmen note his name in Nagpur where he bowled at a lively pace and troubled them with his ability to swing the ball and obtain movement off the seam.

"I just want to keep doing the basics right on the field. I have faith in my ability," he said.




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