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IPL Staff in Delhi 09 April 2012 - 07:49pm IST

Jayawardene gets into Twenty20 mode

DD vice-captain ready for IPL after Test series against England

Sir Lankan skipper Mahela Jayawardene, who will be representing the Delhi Daredevils in IPL 2012, has arrived in Delhi after fulfilling his national duties. The inclusion of Jayawardene and Kevin Pietersen has strengthened DD as they take on title holders Chennai Super Kings at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium tomorrow.

Excerpts from DD vice-captain Jayawardene’s press interaction ahead of the practice session here:

On being the vice-captain of DD and his expectations from IPL 2012


Well, I am really excited to be here finally. I know I have missed couple of games, but nothing changes just because I am the vice-captain. The guys have had two good games. The first one was a really good away from home. We played both the games [that] were played away from home. I am looking forward to it [playing with team]. We have got some exciting players, new signings. And for me to be part of the Daredevils for the first time, I am really excited.

On their opponents CSK


They are the defending champions and they have got a really good group of players. They have had some new signings as well. So we just need to make sure we need [to] control their batting line-up. They have got a really good batting line-up, so we just need to come up with some plans and try and execute those game plans accordingly. And in addition to that, we just need to concentrate on our strengths and be very positive about executing that. So we will have a couple of good meetings. The boys just got together; this is my first training session with the guys. So we will [be] talking and see how we can improve as a team going forward.

On Pietersen and him coming to India after the England-Sri Lanka Test series

Nothing has changed. The weather is pretty similar. I think we were playing in 40 degrees in Colombo, so it [that] hasn’t changed. The conditions in Twenty20 cricket, especially in IPL, different venues will give us different challenges pitch-wise and condition-wise. So we need to get used to that. But other than that for both of us, it is about gelling together as a team, and try and execute the game plan we all will come up with. I am looking forward to that.

On whether he had discussed the IPL with Pietersen while in Sri Lanka


We did not have too many discussions to be honest. Those two weeks playing Test cricket we were trying to find a way for winning for our respective countries. But after that we had a good chat and we came on the same flight as well, and so we had an opportunity to have a chat about this opportunity and playing with new players. I think for both of us it would be a very good challenge and we are looking forward to it. And about coming from Test cricket to T20, these days we keep switching so quickly; two months ago, I was playing one-day cricket and all of a sudden two weeks ago I was playing Test cricket and then Twenty20. So it doesn’t make a huge difference [to us anymore]. It’s all in the mind how you refocus yourself to do another different job. We are quite capable of doing that.

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