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IPL Staff in Bangalore 09 April 2012 - 09:23pm IST

Gayle likely to play: Vettori

RCB skipper pleased with overseas players going into KKR game

Ahead of their first game in IPL 2012, Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper Daniel Vettori said the team needs to address the issue of being slow starters in the tournament. He also asked for more from his bowlers, who often failed to complement their power-packed batting in previous editions of the IPL.

With their 20-run win over the Delhi Daredevils, RCB achieved both their objectives. Their bowlers defended a modest total of 157 as RCB won their opening match of the tournament. The interesting thing about the win was that all four overseas players made significant contributions. Vettori is pleased with the way the overseas players are pulling their weight around the team.

“It’s a tough one because Andrew [McDonald] performed so well in the last game, so there is going to be pressure on all the overseas players to keep performing and hold on to their spots,” Vettori said.

With Tillakaratne DIlshan joining the team, Vettori’s selection headache has only increased ahead of their second game, against the Kolkata Knight Riders. But the RCB skipper is not complaining. “He is there in the squad. So Dilshan is another player who is going to put pressure on the overseas players to perform. It’s great to have so many overseas players to pick from,” he said.

Dilshan’s arrival in the squad coincides with RCB’s batting trump card Chris Gayle regaining his full fitness. Gayle sat out the first match and Vettori said he is likely to take the field against KKR. “We are pretty confident that he is going to be available tomorrow. He has been running and batting, so he should be there in the team tomorrow,” he said.

When asked about KKR’s dashing opening batsman Brendon McCullum, Vettori said, “I think we all know how destructive he can be and how he can take the game away from a side. He hasn’t got off to a start he would have liked, but he is an incredibly dangerous player. So we are going to try and have to stop him at the top of the order. We did that last year when he was playing for Kochi [Tuskers Kerala], and hopefully, we can repeat the same.”

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