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Super Kings’ bowling coach says inclusion of Hussey and Hilfenhaus will make them stronger
By IPL Staff
Chennai 03 May 2012
They might not have looked the invincibles that they were during the past few seasons, but they’re still one of the most feared teams in IPL 2012. When the Chennai Super Kings take on the Deccan Chargers at home, they will definitely start off as favourites.
Ahead of their tie against DC, Andy Bichel, CSK’s bowling coach, spoke about his wards and said he was impressed with the improvement shown by most of them, especially when it comes to death bowling. He said the team has received a shot in the arm with the arrival of Mike Hussey and Ben Hilfenhaus, and that the team’s performance will improve. Excerpts from his pre-match media interaction:
Expectations from the defending champions
There are expectations and to reach this level you have to have tasted success. Winning three in a row will be setting some high standards in the IPL. We’re expected to win and improve with each game that we play. We’ve faced a few challenges along the way with our overseas players, but now they’re all here and we’ll get as much out of them as we can in the rest of the tournament. Performance of the bowling unit
If I look at the individual bowlers, I’ll say they’ve all improved in the last 12 months, and that’s a good thing. The challenge that we’ve faced is that the other teams have played us better than they did in the past. We’ve been hunted, and it’s a challenge for us to rise once again. Also, the fact that we’re a batting-heavy team makes it hard on the bowlers. Lack of a world-class Indian fast bowler
It’s always nice to have that one world-class Indian pacer. But having said that, our youngsters are developing. Even overall in the tournament, young Indian bowlers have done well. [Parvinder] Awana is a great pick. Umesh yadav has bowled well too. It would be nice to have someone who can bowl 140 kph – someone like Yadav. Improvement in death bowling
If you look at our statistics in death bowling this season, they’ve been second to none. That’s an area where we’ve made a big improvement as compared to the last few seasons. It’s all about the mindset. Some guys are doing pretty well in this tournament. I think [Dwayne] Bravo has taken to it pretty well. Albie Morkel is always improving. The challenge for us as the bowling group is [to] reach that level where MS [Dhoni] can just pick anyone in the group for the job and know that they’ll do it.
Will Sudeep Tyagi get a game?
The conditions in Chennai don’t allow too much seam bowling. When we go on the road, we could face some different conditions and then these guys can come to fray. The road ahead
We have a good enough team to win the tournament. For us, reaching the final will be the most difficult part. With Mike Hussey and Ben Hilfenhaus coming in, that will change a few things for us. Mike contributed to our success last year, and he’s back with us.
The Pune Warriors India started their IPL 2012 campaign with consecutive victories against the Mumbai Indians and Kings XI Punjab – but they’ve lost their last three matches as well. With the race for a place in the top four heating up, they need to immediately arrest their slide and look to move up the table. They are barely above the ground floor of the league standings and have a chance to move into the top half of the table when they take on the Mumbai Indians in Match 45 of DLF IPL 2012.
The Mumbai Indians, rated among the top teams prior to the start of the season, have been rusty too; they have five wins from nine matches and barely scraped through in their previous match against the Deccan Chargers.
Thursday, May 3, 2012, 08:00 p.m.
Subrata Roy Sahara Stadium, Pune
Though the Pune Warriors India have a lot of talent and depth in their batting line-up, they haven’t quite scored runs at a pace one would normally associate with Twenty20 cricket. Their overall tournament scoring-rate of 7.50 only highlights the fact that they haven’t quite found their feet yet. Robin Uthappa has the reputation of being one of the most dangerous players in Twenty20 cricket. The Coorg lad is among the top ten run-getters in the tournament, but his tournament strike-rate of 119.60 (compared to his career strike-rate of 134) only confirms that he has been below par so far. He needs to start firing at the top of the order and hope that the likes of Michael Clarke, Sourav Ganguly and Steve Smith can play their roles too.
In the Mumbai Indians’ line-up, Sachin Tendulkar, as always, will continue to be the cynosure. The Little Master hasn’t quite lit up the scoreboard yet, and given the tournament is nearing the business end, it might just be the time for him to come good.
Despite all the talent at his disposal and despite the mountain of runs he scores, Rohit Sharma has often disappointed his fans by throwing his wicket away with poor shot selection. Rohit Sharma had done all the hard work, looked well-set to take his team past the finish line, but it was his dismissal at a crucial juncture that put the match back in the balance. The 25-year-old needs to learn to start valuing his wicket a lot more and take his team past the finish line once he’s well set.
Keep an eye on the man who has hit timber more often than others in Twenty20 cricket – Lasith Malinga. Apart from picking up wickets, the Sri Lankan has been miserly too; his economy rate of 5.06 is the best in the tournament, and he will know he is within striking distance of the Purple Cap.
Ashok Dinda’s four-wicket haul led the Pune Warriors India to their first ever win over the Mumbai Indians when the two teams met earlier this season. After posting a modest 129 for nine in their 20 overs, PWI restricted their opponents to 101 for nine to win by 28 runs.
Prior to that contest at the Wankhede Stadium on April 6, the two teams had met twice in IPL 2011, and Mumbai Indians came up triumphant on both occasions. Trivia
The Mumbai Indians have the poorest scoring rate out of the nine teams in IPL 2012 – 7.19.
The Pune Warriors India have conceded the most sixes in IPL 2012 – 57.
The Pune Warriors India will head to Kolkata following this fixture to take on the Kolkata Knight Riders on May 4, while the Mumbai Indians will prepare to host defending champions, Chennai Super Kings, on Sunday, May 6.