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Ajit Chandila and James Faulkner played a vital role in setting up victory for Rajasthan Royals against the Sunrisers Hyderabadat the Sawai Mansingh Stadium on Saturday. Opening the bowling for RR, Chandila bowled three overs on the trot to finish with two for 13 while pacer, Faulkner ran through the SRH line-up from the other end.
The duo had the opposition reeling at five for 19 and Kevon Cooper chipped in, claiming one to leave SRH gasping on six for 29. However the Sunrisers lower-order led by Darren Sammyand Amit Mishrarevived the innings and a late onslaught by Dale Steyn ensured that RR had a total to defend. But, the inform Royals’ top-order bat Shane Watson ensured a smooth victory for the home team.
After yet another team effort helped Royals’ jump to third place in the points table, Chandila reflected on the convincing performance of the side while speaking to iplt20.com.
Excerpts from the interview: What is your plan while opening the bowling for RR?
My main role is to bowl with the new ball and my thinking is to bowl dot balls. The more the dot balls I bowl the better it is for me as batsmen try to attack I get wickets. So that is Rahul bhai’s (Dravid) and my plan, that I bowl as many dot balls as I can.
What was the strategy while bowling first?
The plan was to restrict them to as few runs as possible so it would be easier for us to bat later. We also wanted to bat first. But bowling first turned successful as I got two wickets and Faulkner too did well. We partnered well and that helped us win.
What was the reason you didn’t bowl your fourth over despite being successful?
Maybe Dravid thought that with me being an off-spinner it would have been difficult later in the slog overs, maybe. It is okay, it is part of the game. He is very experienced so he knows the best.
After having them reeling on six for 29 did you expect them to put up 144 runs on the board?
They played extraordinarily well later in the innings. (Amit) Mishra built a good partnership with Darren Sammy. We thought we could keep them to 100 – 110 runs. But, they played really well and it was game on and so there was a bit a pressure at the time.
SRH has defended smaller totals but Shane Watson saw RR through to victory. Your thoughts on the chase?
We are confident of our batting. Since Watson is also in good form and had just made a hundred (in the previous match against the Chennai Super Kings), we were confident chasing.
What was it like batting out there?
Yes I did feel that they attacked a bit too much on us but that helped us, it turned out in our favour.
A word on Watson’s innings?
He is our key player and if he plays well we can win games easily. He scored a hundred in the last game so we were confident that if he is there and will score. All that we needed was one good partnership. And Rahul bhai and Watson built that partnership that helped us win.
James Faulkner became the first to claim a five-wicket haul this season, your opinion of him?
He is a good bowler. His bowling analysis is very good and he has conceded very few runs and got wickets. He is a key bowler for us.
Does this win boost your confidence taking on RCB next?
Every game is a new game and we will have to make new plans for Royal Challengers Bangalore. Every game is important and everyone wants to win matches and strengthen their position in the points table.
5: Number of wickets lost by Sunrisers Hyderabad during the Power Play – most for a side in IPL 2013. There were four instances of a side losing four wickets in first 6 overs (including two such instances for Pune Warriors India).
5: For 20- James Faulkner’s figures in the match – best for any bowler in IPL 2013. He bettered Sunil Narine’s 4 for 13 for Kolkata Knight Riders against Delhi Daredevils at Kolkata.
29: Sunrisers Hyderabad’s score at the fall of sixth wicket. This is still not the lowest total at the fall of sixth wicket in IPL. The record lies with Kochi Tuskers Kerala, who lost their first 6 wickets with only 11 runs on the board against Deccan Chargers at Kochi in 2011.
60: Darren Sammy’s score – highest by a number seven batsman in IPL 2013. Pune Warriors India’s Mitchell Marsh had made 38 against Mumbai Indians at Wankhede.
98: Shane Watson’s score – highest unbeaten score in the nineties in IPL. Shikhar Dhawan and Virender Sehwag shared the previous record with innings’ of 95 not out.