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KKR coach says his team needs a good start in IPL 2012
By IPL Staff
Kolkata 04 April 2012
Kolkata Knight Riders did the City of Joy proud by getting past the league stage of the Indian Premier League for the first time last year. This year, the team looks to do better, having acquired some exciting names in the likes of Brendon McCullum, Marchant de Lange and Sunil Narine. Despite the optimistic outlook about the franchise in IPL 2012, head coach Trevor Bayliss urged a note of caution while speaking to the media ahead of KKR’s first game against the Delhi Daredevils at the Eden Gardens on April 5.
“Our first five or six games are in the first 15-16 days. So, it’s a very important first two weeks of the tournament. Obviously, the first game you want to get off to a good start so that you can go into the rest of the tournament with confidence. Any one team in this competition can win a match on their day, especially if you have a player like [Virender] Sehwag in the opposition,” Bayliss said.
He even sounded a warning that Delhi are not to be taken lightly despite being hampered by the absence of some of their big names – Mahela Jayawardene, David Warner and Kevin Pietersen – who are currently away on international duty.
“We don’t want to take them easy because those players are not here. If we go into the game thinking that way, we might be in for a nasty surprise. We will be going into the match knowing that the replacement players are fully capable of producing good results. We won’t be taking them easy, that’s for sure,” Bayliss said.
“I think it will be a good even game. Hopefully, it’s a good spectacle for the fans of Kolkata,” the KKR coach added.
International names playing alongside Indian players is pretty much the norm in the IPL. With that perspective, Bayliss confirmed that he would use the presence of Brett Lee and Gautam Gambhir in the side to figure out the details of every player, including Virender Sehwag in the opposition.
“We’ve not had our final team meeting as yet. We’ll do that tomorrow before the game. We’ve got the little left-handed captain [Gambhir] who has played fair bit of cricket with Sehwag. A lot of the international guys, whether it is the Indians or the overseas players, have played with each other a lot. I don’t think it is any secret knowing each other’s game. They will be able to pass on the strengths and weaknesses of everyone in the opposition and Sehwag is no different,” he said.
Speaking of the team composition before the match against the Daredevils, Bayliss confirmed that both the South African all-rounders, Jacques Kallis and Marchant de Lange, would be available for tomorrow’s match. With the availability of both those players confirmed, KKR, unlike Delhi, are in the envious position of having a host of international players – Ryan ten Doeschate, Lee, etc – to choose their final four overseas players for tomorrow’s game.
Bayliss agreed to this by saying, “It’s a good position to be in. I’d much rather be in that position rather than wondering who to pick.”
However, when it was pointed out that KKR had the luxury to choose from three world-class options in Gautam Gambhir, McCullum and Kallis for their opening combination, Bayliss responded with humour that KKR might still play “someone else” at that position.
Delhi Daredevils coach says CSK and MI are favourites
By IPL Staff
Kolkata 04 April 2012
Delhi Daredevils are set to play their first match of DLF IPL 2012 against local favourites Kolkata Knight Riders. The team has a whole new look to it this season, but with a number of their big stars still on international duty, much of the burden of the team’s success in the initial stages of the tournament will fall mostly on Virender Sehwag.
DD head coach Eric Simmons caught up with the media to answer all queries regarding team preparations ahead of the start of the 2012 campaign. Excerpts from the press conference:
On their opponents, the Kolkata Knight Riders
If you look at all the sides in the IPL, there are few teams who are favourites. Every team has got match-winners. The nature of T20 cricket is if a match-winner plays [the whole game] out then he can solely win the game for his team. They [KKR] are a well-balanced side. They are certainly looking to do well this year. On the favourites before the start of the tournament
Chennai looked to have strengthened their side with the inclusion of Ravindra Jadeja. They have done well in all the IPLs. Mumbai too have strengthened their side with their new acquisitions like Pragyan Ojha. At the outset, the two sides stand out as the favourites for the balance and depth of their squads. On the absence of the international names in the DD squad currently
We expected Ross [Taylor] to be here as we knew that Mahela [Jayawardene] and [Kevin] Pietersen would not be available. But he was hit by one of the teammates [Morne Morkel]. That's the nature of the IPL. You have to chart your ways through. It's disappointing though. On the key to winning the IPL
The IPL is not a sprint. It's like a marathon in some respects. You have to peak at the right time. I hope that's going to happen.
On DD’s spin attack
The only thing we lack is lack is a big name; someone with reputation. We have worked really hard with the players we got. We have got some exciting guys. We have got Roelf van der Merwe, obviously with some international experience. He is key for us. We have got [Shahbaz] Nadeem and [Pawan] Negi. There are few ideas and thoughts, which we would like to use in our spin department to surprise the teams. I think we have a capable bunch of spinners. On battles within the battle – Yusuf vs Irfan and Gambhir vs Sehwag
I think IPL is an incredible tournament; an exciting place to play cricket, exactly for those reasons. You have brothers [playing] against each other; great friends in Gauti [Gautam Gambhir] and Viru [Virender Sehwag] in opposite camps. [It’s] a great place to nurture young cricketers.