All-rounder says team does not give up and rises to challenges
By Shirin Sadikot
Mohali 12 May 2013
Darren Sammy is one of those cricketers who does not invoke fear among the opposition. But while batsmen consume all their energies in figuring the big guns out, he quietly sneaks in and does the damage.
Six wickets and 105 runs from six matches perhaps looks ordinary on paper. But when one sees that all of those six wickets have come in match-winning spells (2 for 10 against DD and 4 for 22 against KXIP), the true value is known.
The second of those figures came in Mohali, as the Sunrisers Hyderabaddefended 150, thanks to Parthiv Patel’s (61 off 47) tenacity and Thisara Perera’s (32 off 19) belligerence. Three of Sammy’s wickets wereAdam Gilchrist, Shaun Marsh and David Miller – KXIP’s three best and in-form batsmen.
After his game-changing and match-winning performance, Sammy took time out to speak to iplt20.com and shared how Waqar Younis has given direction to the SRH bowling attack to make them one of the most lethal in the tournament.
Your little girl is proving to be very lucky for you!
Yes, she is. Probably I should make another one to get even luckier (laughs). But it’s been a good experience playing my first IPL and for a good bunch of guys who continue to display that never-say-die attitude every time. On Saturday, after being on 52 for five, to get to 150 on that wicket was a very good fight back.
How classy was Parthiv Patel’s knock?
I think it’s proven that the anchors are as important in this format as the hitters are. Michael Hussey is not a big hitter but he has the Orange Cap. I think batting in T20 is more about reading the situation of the game and executing your shots properly. I thought Parthiv did that really well on Saturday night. He assessed the conditions, analysed the situation and he knew that if he got 50 in the end, we will end up with 140-plus.
With such a strong bowling attack, how do you approach an innings?
We go in with a strategy for every batsman and plan for them individually. On that wicket you don’t have to do much. With the grass on the good-length, our bowling coach, Waqar Younis asked us to bowl like we do in a Test match – just put the ball on that one spot and let the pitch do the rest Later on we took pace off the ball.
You dismissed KXIP’s three most dangerous batsmen. Which one was your favourite wicket?
All of them have been dangerous at different times in the tournament and David Miller, especially. Our plan was to bowl on good-length to him and let him try to have a go at us. Even though he scored a 100 in 38 balls a couple of games back, Saturday he was starting on naught. He made a mistake and we got the result.
What have you picked up from people like Waqar Younis and Dale Steyn?
Oh, there’s so much of experience there. The one thing I have picked from them is to be clear. Make sure when you’re on the top of your mark, you know what ball you’re going to bowl – if it’s a Yorker, slower one, length ball, bouncer, whatever it is. When you start running in, no matter what the batsman does, you know that is the ball that’s going to come out of your hand.
Death bowling is a major area of concern for most teams in T20. The Sunrisers have done better than many others in that regard. Is there any special preparation for that aspect?
We pay a lot of attention to the tail. We know everyone can swing their bats in this format. Today the planning was to vary the pace because on this wicket it’s difficult for the batsmen to score if you do that. If they had started picking us, we’d have gone to plan B, which was Yorkers. In any form of cricket the Yorker is always the best ball to bowl towards the end of the innings. Having Waqar in the team has helped us a lot, especially in planning for each batsman.
What is the best thing about being a Sunriser?
This team never gives up. We don’t have too many star players but when our backs are at the wall somebody steps up. Today it was Parthiv and (Thisara) Perera who did it for us. What Sunrisers have done is that we have risen to every challenge.