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After losing by one run to the Delhi Daredevils at the Feroz Shah Kotla, the Rajasthan Royalswill be keen to redeem themselves at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium on May 1.
One of the less-fancied teams in the tournament, the Royals had done better than most teams to restrict the power packed Daredevils to 152. The visitors were within sniffing distance of a victory thanks to an unbeaten 84 by Ajinkya Rahane, when a brilliant penultimate over by Morne Morkel turned the game on its head.
After the heartbreaking defeat, Royals’ left-arm spinner, Ankeet Chavan spoke to iplt20.com about his team’s bowling and the path ahead.
On yet another last-over finish
Yes, it went really badly for us today. We could have done better. The second last over [bowled by Morne Morkel in which he conceded only three runs and claimed a wicket] probably changed the game. On the RR doing better than most teams by restricting the DD batting line-up to 152
The plan was to execute well what we had planned, and to a great extent we could do that. And [we wanted to] try to bowl more dot balls that would bring them under pressure. On claiming Kevin Pietersen’s wicket
The plan basically was to bowl your best ball and not give him [Pietersen] the ball on his area to hit.
On how RR have worked on bowling in death overs, which was good today, except for the last over that conceded 20 runs
We have worked on the mistakes that we had committed earlier. We planned to mix the pace and bowl a few more yorkers, which I think worked On Ajinkya Rahane’s innings and him getting the Orange Cap back after losing it to Virender Sehwag earlier in the match It is a good feeling that the Orange Cap is with him. He deserves it, but it would have been better if we would have won the game also. On whether they could have done anything differently
Not really. The second last over was bowled really well [by Morne Morkel] and that’s what changed the game. On playing back-to-back games against Delhi Daredevils
Every game is different. We can’t really predict what can happen. So we [are] just looking forward to taking the positives from this game and go ahead in the next game.
On what skipper Rahul Dravid say to the team after this game
Nothing really. [...] This is past, let’s focus on the next game.
Yogesh Nagar’s 20-ball 27 was as crucial to theDelhi Daredevil’s win over the Rajasthan Royalsas Morne Morkel’s penultimate over in which he conceded just three runs and claimed a wicket.
With the top order in fantastic form, the DD all-rounder has had few outings in the middle. But today, he played a valiant knock to help his team put up a competitive total after Virender Sehwag set up a platform with his 63 off 39 balls. 22-year-old Nagar slammed two huge sixes and a four in the last over before returning to the dugout with a ball left in the innings. After the thrilling win, he spoke to iplt20.com about his innings and lauded the efforts of Morkel and Umesh Yadav in the game.
Excerpts from his brief interview:
On the significance of his 27-run knock
It was a low-scoring game, so yes it was important. The runs that we added towards the end helped us win the game ultimately. On what he was thinking as he was coming in to bat when the team needed a few hits
When you are a middle-order batsman most of the time you have to bat in a situations like today [when the team is in a tough spot], so my effort is always to give my best for the team.
On his sixes
I was only thinking of scoring as many runs as I can to add to the total since it was the last over.
On the wicket
It was a good wicket. It was a good batting wicket and it helped bowling as well.
On the target that they had in mind while opting to bat first
We had set ourselves a target of reaching 155-160 runs. The 153 that we made was a good score, and we knew that the game would be stretched to the very end and head for a tight finish, and we can win. On the lesser-known RR bowling line-up that was able to restrict DD better than some of the other teams
They may not have big names, but they have a good attack. They have good medium-pacers and spinners. But we managed to get to a good total. On whether Virender Sehwag’s wicket caused them to lose momentum
We had a good start, but we lost some wickets. But we recovered in the last few overs.
On Ross Taylor not batting the way he normally does
We have confidence in him and he will win us matches on his batting alone one of these days. On the last over being given to Umesh Yadav with Ajinkya Rahane and Owais Shah at the crease
The second last over [bowled by Morkel] was important. If we conceded only two-three runs in it then, we would get to defend 12-13 runs in the last over. We had the confidence in Umesh that if he bowls two-three good deliveries, then we will win the game. On playing back-to-back games against the Rajasthan Royals
It is a good thing for us, and we have won this contest, and hope to beat them in Jaipur too.
On continuing to be the table-toppers
Yes, but we have to continue and make it to the very end [finals].