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DC coach says his team’s performance in the field has been disappointing
By IPL Staff
Bengaluru 05 May 2012
In what is considered to be the most open IPL, the Deccan Chargers have struggled to make their presence felt. With two wins from 10 games, the team from Hyderabad needs to win their remaining six matches with a convincing margin to give themselves a chance of qualifying for the playoffs. Their next target will be to beat theRoyal Challengers Bangaloreon their home turf.
DC coach Darren Lehmann addressed the media ahead of the match and singled out poor fielding as the biggest reason for the team’s miserable state. He also urged the young Indian players to pull their socks up and be counted.
Motivating the team after a series of defeats
It’s been hard, although we had a couple of good wins in the middle. I think it’s just about us getting better as a unit. Everyone knows we haven’t fielded the best. Had we fielded a bit better, we’d have won a few more games. We have a lot of younger players and they’re still learning. There’s a lot of responsibility on our overseas players. Having said that, I expect the younger guys to perform better than they have, especially in the field.
Lack of form of Indian players
They’ve been good in patches, to be fair. Again, that’s what you get with young players; they will be inconsistent. But along the way you learn a lot about them [is] by giving them the experience of playing. It’s better for them to play rather than not playing for other franchises. It is a process and it takes time to materialise. At the end, we haven’t played well as a team. Substandard fielding
It’s been disappointing. Talking about the youngsters, it’s no hiding the fact that playing in front of such big crowds does get to them. That’s what we’ve been talking about – coping with playing at a world-class stage like the IPL. It’s the biggest Twenty20 competition in the world.
Big match against RCB
Every game is important for us now if we want to give ourselves a chance to make it to the playoffs. It does put pressure on the guys but we’ve got to deal with that because we’ve got ourselves into this position. Having said that, skill wise we’ve done pretty well. It’s the fielding that’s let us down.
The Dale Steyn factor
He’s been magnificent. He’s been shouldering a lot of burden, especially with all the travel. He’s really excited to come in and bowl. We obviously miss Ishant Sharma this season, but it gives guys like Veer Pratap Singh a chance to prove himself. JP Duminy’s fitness worries
We’ll take a call on him after the practice. He’s had some stitches on the cuts he’s sustained. I doubt whether he’ll play, but it depends on how he pulls up after a net session. Dan Christian replaced him in the last game and we’ll change that around depending on the conditions. The Bengaluru wicket has some pace and bounce in it, so we’ll have a second look at our batting order.
RR batsman says his team can still score enough points to make it to the playoffs
By IPL Staff
Mohali 05 May 2012
After holding the pole position in the initial phase of the tournament, the Rajasthan Royals are currently placed at No.7 in the points table. The Rahul Dravid-led team will take on the Kings XI Punjab, who they have beaten earlier this season. Strengthened by the inclusion of Shane Watson, RR will be keen to get back into the race for the top four spots in IPL 2012. Excerpts from Owais Shah’s media interaction ahead of the KXIP match:
On RR losing their last few matches after starting off well
[...] Like you said, we started very well and last game was one of those where we played badly, but the game before that is the one that really hurt us. We really needed to win that game; the one against Delhi Daredevils in Jaipur. But it is one of those things where we didn’t have much luck in that game and we didn’t play very well against DD [in Delhi] and had back-to-back losses. [...] Twenty20 is such a game where you can play all the [good] cricket and still lose [...] But it is not too late. There is still plenty of [games in] the tournament left [to be played]. There is no one apart from Delhi [Daredevils], no other team that has pulled away from rest of the group; so all is not lost. We didn’t play very well in the last game, but we hope to change that starting from tomorrow, and hope we can pull enough wins together and finish in the top four.
On why most teams are in a tight race
I don’t know the reason. But typically [teams like] Mumbai [Indians] and Chennai [Super Kings] usually dominate; especially Chennai. But this year, those teams haven’t quite dominated like they normally do. [But] obviously Delhi [Daredevils] has. But this is a good thing for the tournament. There are still three places open for teams to qualify for the last four places. [...] it is a good thing because leading up to the last five or six games, there is still enough interest from all the other teams [...].
On his form
[...] The last game I didn’t do well. I played a poor shot. The game before that, I played one ball [...]. In the games before that, we played [Royal Challengers] Bangalore [...] and sometimes you got to take a chance when you are chasing. [...] Unfortunately, sometimes the chances that you take, the shot you play, don’t come off. [...] That’s Twenty20. You try to get the runs on the board, and I guess it is my job to play the explosive role. [Like] if I am playing with Rahul Dravid, his job is to play through and it is our job to go in and get in quickly and take shot. [...] I feel mentally I am in a very good space. I hope to put a score together and try and win RR a game. [...] That [winning] is more important for me then not scoring runs. [...]
On losing Kevon Cooper to injury
Kevon was unfortunate to be injured. We are all disappointed that he got injured, because it is always good for the team to be able to select when everyone is available. Every time he played, he did well. But we are lucky enough to have another very good all-rounder in Shane Watson [...]. We are disappointed in not having Cooper because he also added a lot of depth in our overseas group of players. [...] The main goal for the team right now is to start winning some games and get to the top four teams. On whether not having a strong bowling line-up is adding pressure on the batting line-up
Every team has a strength and a weakness. [...] We have some international experience and our captain, Rahul Dravid. We have some good players, but don’t underestimate our bowlers. The kind of pitches we play on in India, I think are suited to our kind of bowling line-up; especially in Jaipur where you bowl wicket to wicket and slower balls, etc. [...] I don’t think it puts pressure on our batting. The batters always put their hands up if we fail. [...] It was poor performance in the last game, and we are hoping to put that right.