Hyderabad: Having suffered a loss against Sunrisers Hyderabad in their previous game chasing a modest total, the Delhi Capitals were determined not to lose another on the trot. The plan was to go hard in the powerplay and amass as many runs as possible given the small boundaries in Sharjah, revealed assistant coach Mohammad Kaif.
Speaking after their 18-run victory over Kolkata Knight Riders, the former Indian cricketer said, “Sharjah has been a high-scoring game so we had to come back stronger after losing to SRH.
We spoke to the batsmen to have a bit more intensity in powerplay and we got it right from the very first ball by the way Shikhar (Dhawan) and Prithvi Shaw played. There was no target in mind, but we had to go hard in the poewrplay to get the momentum. After a good start,(Shreyas) Iyer played a brilliant knock and it was a complete team performance. Whatever we spoke in the meeting, they executed well. They failed to do that in the last match and were a bit tentative against SRH.”
Given the small ground, Kaif lauded Amit Mishra, who left the field after bowling two overs with injury, and said he could have played a bigger role. “Amit Mishra got injured or else he would have played a major role. He is very experienced and he took the wicket of (Shubman) Gill which was important as he likes to play a long innings.”
Despite chasing a huge total of 229, KKR were not out of the game as Eoin Morgan (44) and Rahul Tripathi (36) kept their side in the hunt till the penultimate over by scoring 78 runs in just 31 deliveries. Speaking about their knock Kaif said, “It was surprising to see Tripathi bat so well. He was playing his first match and I didn’t expect him to play like that. He looked great,” he added.
Meanwhile, England limited over captain Morgan said with so many batters in the line-up, it was difficult to bat higher up the order. “I don’t think I came late in the innings. When you look at our batting line-up, we have a number of match-winners, so it’s very difficult to go up the order. Particularly when you have a world-class all-rounder in Andre Russell. He is an incredible striker, and when he comes up the order, obviously everybody else has to shift down a little bit,” he said.
Morgan said there were a lot of positives from the match despite loss. “Delhi bowled well, to a position of strength and looked like winning it. It just wasn’t meant to be. We move on, we played some fantastic cricket throughout so far but Delhi have looked more promising early in the tournament, so to come out and produce a fantastic game but not getting over the line, there are huge positives to take.”