Not taking PWI lightly: Sekhar

Delhi Daredevils’ mentor says team composition for tomorrow’s game is yet to be decided

By IPL Staff
New Delhi 20 April 2012
Table-toppers Delhi Daredevils are set to take on the Pune Warriors India at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium tomorrow. The heroics of Kevin Pietersen won them the match against the Deccan Chargers last night here, and they will be hoping for more convincing victories in the forthcoming matches.

Mentor T.A. Sekhar spoke to the media ahead of DD’s match against PWI.

Excerpts from his pre-match press conference:

On team composition

We have not thought about it. We have to have a look at the wicket and we need to talk to the captain. We have not thought about it yet.
On whether there is a concern about the batting; Kevin Pietersen’s innings yesterday overshadowed the collapse in the batting earlier in the innings

[It is] not a concern, because we have batting [lower down], and Yogesh Nagar is capable of batting and he did a good job of finishing the match; and that’s what we have assigned Yogesh Nagar, [the role] as a finisher. It happens in some matches, when you have big cricketers there is possibility of a collapse, but we have arrested that. KP played one of the best knocks so far in the tournament and we are satisfied with it.

On Varun Aaron’s availability, since the bowler has been seen practicing in the nets

He is getting very close to 100 percent fitness. I think, in maybe a week, he should be ready to bowl in the IPL. These fast bowler’s injuries, you cannot rush, because if it recurs, then he goes back by another two months. We are playing it very safe. He is almost ready to bowl, but we want him to be mentally [prepared], because he hasn’t played for a long time. Mentally, also he should be match fit.

On what he says to a bowler who has had an off day, like Umesh Yadav had yesterday

We normally don’t talk to the bowler immediately after the match, because it is not right. He has played lot of cricket, he has played exceptionally well in Australia. In the previous four matches, he has bowled really well. If you look at it, couple of fours went through the edge and couple of shots were played. It happens in Twenty20 cricket. It doesn’t bother me, because he is a quality bowler. He can always come back really strong.

On the Pune Warriors India

Pune [Warriors India] has been doing really well, and they have got some very good middle-order batsman, who can finish the match, and then they have got some even up the order. They have some very good batsmen and they have got very good Indian bowlers. It is a good side, and we are not taking it [the match] very lightly. It will be a very good match too for the fans to watch.

On promising bowlers in the DD squad and the IPL

We have played with almost a similar team. We have made only one change after the first match. But [based on] whatever I have seen in the practice matches and nets, Pawan Negi looks very promising and Sunny Gupta is bowling well; these two are the spinners [in our team]. Pawan is genuine left-arm spinner and Sunny Gupta is a genuine off-spinner. These are the boys, who really impress me.
Iqbal Abdulla [from Kolkata Knight Riders] did well last year [but] this year he hasn’t got enough opportunity to play. If you look at Bhargav Bhatt, he has played just one or two matches and done reasonably well. In Rajasthan Royals, [there is] no young spinner at all. In Royal Challengers Bangalore, there is no young spinner at all. They have not played [them]. They have [them] in their squad, but they have not played [any young players].

Basically, everybody is going with experienced spinners and experienced fast-bowlers. The wickets are such that they suit fast bowlers early on. Maybe as we go along [progress in the tournament] the wickets will wear out, and then we can see some spinners playing.
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