MI score was too much for us: Shakib

Kolkata Knight Riders all-rounder says about 160 would’ve been chaseable

By Akshay Manwani
Kolkata 12 May 2012
Shakib Al Hasan made a not-so-happy return to the Kolkata Knight Riders playing XI as his team was convincingly beaten by the Mumbai Indians at the Eden Gardens today. Although Shakib himself bowled a good spell of 4-0-27-1, an unbeaten 167-run stand between Rohit Sharma (109*) and Herschelle Gibbs (66*), set MI up for a winning score of 182.

Shakib spoke to following his team’s 27-run loss to MI, which also ended KKR’s six-game winning run.

You were on a remarkable six-game winning streak. It had to come to an end some time?

Yes, but our bowling attack is one of the best bowling attacks in the IPL so far. We didn’t execute our plans. We went for plenty. 180 [odd] was too much for our batsmen. Between 150 to 160 would have been chaseable with the way we are batting; but with 180 we gave away 20 more runs.

When you say you didn’t execute you plans, do you mean the spinners kept it tight, but it was the pacers who went for far too many runs?

We knew that on that sort of track, it would be hard for the fast bowlers to contain [the batsmen]. We knew they would go for some runs. But still, if we had executed our plans properly, like bowling yorkers properly, they would not have scored many runs. If you see [Lasith] Malinga, the way he bowled the last two or three overs of his spell, it was amazing. Even though it was a flat track, you can’t get away with yorkers.

A word on Rohit Sharma’s innings.

Proper cricketing shots. He is a special talent. There is no doubt about it. Whenever he gets going it looks good from the outside [but] not when you are the opponent. He is a class player.

One of the criticisms leveled against KKR is that the batting relies too heavily on Gautam Gambhir. And because he got out early today and you were not able to chase down the score that argument only gets stronger. Your thoughts.

Yes, Gautam has been consistent for KKR this year. He has been the only batsman who has been consistent. Other than him, no one has really clicked. Brendon [McCullum] had a good game last game, but he wasn’t able to play because of an injury problem. Jacques Kallis played well today. Hopefully, he will continue with that. Yusuf Pathan got some runs. That will give him lot of confidence as well. It will help us go further in the tournament.

You made a comeback into the playing XI for this game. It’s either been you or Iqbal Abdulla who are partnering with Sunil Narine as specialist spinners. What is the idea behind rotating you and Iqbal?

I don’t know. It’s up to the management. Whatever they think is the best combination for KKR on that particular day, for that particular game, they can choose that. We don’t have any problem with that. We knew that some of the guys will be playing and some of the guys will be dropped. But we have to make sure that whenever we get our chance, we make full use of it, so that we can play more games.
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