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Royal Challengers Bangalore captain says Kolkata wicket will be slow and turn a bit
By IPL Staff
Kolkata 27 April 2012
Halfway through the tournament, Daniel Vettori is a happy man as his Royal Challengers Bangalore are among the top four in the league standings. And while RCB were unlucky that their last game against the Chennai Super Kings was washed out, their three consecutive wins before that indicate that the Bengaluru franchise has definitely recovered after their initial losses in IPL 2012.
Now, as RCB get set to take on Kolkata Knight Riders, Vettori spoke to the media and talked about his team as well as what would be a good score on the Eden Gardens wicket.
Excerpts from Vettori’s interaction:
On his injury update:
I had a hamstring strain that I picked up in the Rajasthan [Royals] game. I was a bit precautionary. I will have a fitness test tonight. I'm pretty confident of playing tomorrow. On doing the balancing act while selecting the four overseas players:
It's important to get the balance right with four overseas players. They can be crucial positions. Our overseas players have performed exceptionally well. Particularly in the last few games, [Tillakaratne] Dilshan, [Chris] Gayle and AB [de Villiers] have really led us to victories. We know how important they are and we also know how important the Indian players are. It's difficult balancing. Every team goes through it with a bit of chopping and changing.
On Muttiah Muralitharan:
It's incredibly difficult as well. He is an exceptionally good bowler. The games he played for us, he did a great job. We just continue trying to find the right balance. Guys understand that they might miss out in some games, and that goes for everyone. On Zaheer Khan’s recovery:
He is getting stronger and stronger, and gets better. He just gets better with every game he plays. He just wants to play as much as he can so that he can get his fitness up. He is a good leader within the team, particularly with the young Indian bowlers like Harshal Patel and R Vinay Kumar. So it's been a real help for me. I think he just got stronger and fitter. He uses variation pretty well, particularly at the death. He is an extremely smart bowler. On Chris Gayle:
Chris likes to play the way he wants. We can understand he likes to get himself in for five-six balls and once he is settled, he is prepared to attack. He did that last year and he has started to do that again this year. He is a quality player. He knows his game inside out. Hopefully, we can give him the confidence and freedom to go out and do it. On Virat Kohli not being at his best:
He might not have got the runs the way he would have liked, but he is a contributor. He gives everything on the field. He takes great catches. He tries hard and we know a good innings [from him] is not far away. These things happen. But I'm sure he would be back pretty strong. On the Eden Gardens wicket:
Probably it would be consistent with what we have seen so far; reasonably slow and turn a little bit. It's not the easiest thing for the batsmen. You have to come here and adjust just like when you go to Bengaluru you have to adjust. Any team that wants to win the IPL has to play well in all conditions. Going by the last few matches, 150 should probably be a good total, but I’m not sure.
On the tournament being wide open at this stage:
That’s what you want from the fans’ perspective and the organisational perspective – an incredibly tight tournament. There are some quality teams and no one has really stood out. Deccan [Chargers] won last night; [that] shows that any team can win on a given day.
Kolkata Knight Riders assistant coach says team is taking it one game at a time
By IPL Staff
Kolkata 27 April 2012
After each of their respective last games was washed out, the Kolkata Knight Riders and the Royal Challengers Bangalore are set to clash at the Eden Gardens on April 28. Both teams have nine points from eight matches, but KKR are placed second in the league standings ahead of fourth placed RCB due to a better net run-rate. However, KKR assistant coach, Vijay Dahiya, said that while he was happy that his team figured in the top two at this stage, they are only taking it one game at a time and not looking too far ahead. Excerpts from Dahiya’s interaction with the media:
On Laxmipathy Balaji’s fitness:
He is on the ground right now. We are having a look. One thing [is] for sure, if he is not 100 percent, we will not take a chance. This is a long tournament and he has been fantastic so far. When he is absolutely ready, then we will go ahead with him. On KKR’s schedule ahead:
It’s about the next game that you play. We are not looking too far ahead; it’s about the game tomorrow. If you look at the points table right now, nobody is running away with the points. It’s good to be in the first two, right now. But it all comes down to what kind of cricket we play in the rest of the tournament. On whether KKR have any specific plans for Chris Gayle and AB de Villiers:
I think both of them are fantastic players. It depends on what we do on the park. It also depends on what kind of situation they are in – either they are batting first or we have put the runs up on the board. And according to that the plans keep changing. On the IPL so far:
If you look at this year’s IPL, it looks like it is starting from now. Eight games have gone by. The second half [gets underway]. Everybody is neck and neck, and it all comes down to who travels well.
On Balaji’s replacement should he not play tomorrow:
I think we have a lot of options – Ahmed Shami who has just been picked for India A. It is a proud moment not only for KKR but for Bengal as well... He can be an option.
On opening the bowling with Sunil Narine instead of Yusuf Pathan:
If you see, he [Sunil] finished in the last six overs. It’s not only about the start; it’s how you finish as well. It’s according to the situation, the opposition. And you have to give credit there to Gautam [Gambhir] for starting with Yusuf. He’s been able to manage his bowlers and has done that brilliantly so far. On a coach’s role when batsmen improvise:
You always make plans. But when the game starts, you are most helpless. It's not only about plan A, you have plan B and C as well. It's about the guy who is out there in the middle. It's a combination of both mental [skill] and technique.
On the new pitch:
It's a very god thing that the curator has given us three options. Once he gives us the pitch, we will take a call from there. Even in the second game we had a brilliant wicket. So, more or less, you know the nature of the surface.