Toss wasn’t a factor: van der Merwe

Delhi Daredevils all-rounder says early wickets cost KKR the game

By Akshay Manwani
Kolkata 06 April 2012
In the end, even rain couldn’t stop the Delhi Daredevils against the Kolkata Knight Riders. Heading into this game, much was made about the side being hampered by the absence of Mahela Jayawardene, Kevin Pietersen and David Warner, who are away on international duty. But with Morne Morkel and Roelof van der Merwe stepping up and playing a crucial part in DD’s eight-wicket win against KKR, all their doubters were properly silenced. caught up with van der Merwe immediately after the match for an exclusive chat.

Did the toss play a big factor today?

I won’t say it played a big factor. We decided to bowl first and we struck early on. We got three wickets very quickly, which put the opposition on the back foot. If you lose momentum with wickets, it is hard to recover.

Was it a deliberate plan to have four different bowlers up front or did Virender Sehwag play it according to the situation?

I think Viru [Sehwag] played it on feeling. He is that type of captain – when something feels right, he calls on you. He just tells us [to] be ready to bowl, and when something is happening, he’ll call on you to bowl. He thinks about it and just acts on it.

Was there much turn in the wicket?

There was not much turn. It was a shiny deck; the ball skidded on a bit. The seam was getting wet, it was hard to grip and so it was hard to turn the ball tonight.

Was the absence of a majority of the international players a motivating factor for the lesser known faces to perform well?

Definitely. When you have got big players like them in the side, you know that you won’t be getting a lot of game time, and when you get a chance you want to show what you are about. As a squad, we just want to win games. So, whoever plays, we support that.

Your side fielded pretty well. Is that an area you have conscientiously focused on this season?

Definitely. Fielding in pro T20 cricket wins games or loses games even though you don’t bat or bowl with it. It’s a deciding factor. A great catch or a good run-out puts pressure on the batting side. Fielding is a big factor.

Which one are you gunning for – the Purple Cap or the Orange Cap?

I suppose the Purple one.
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