October 2, 2020 3:23:46 pm
Kings XI Punjab pacer Sheldon Cottrell is unfazed by the mounting losses of his team in the IPL and asserts that the side will bounce back just as he did after being pummelled by Rahul Tewatia not so long ago. Cottrell came up with tidy figures of 1/20 though for a lost cause against Mumbai Indians in Abu Dhabi on Thursday, showing resolve after being struck for five sixes by Tewatia in the loss to Rajasthan Royals in a previous game.
“My comeback was excellent. But I wished that my bowling effort could have helped my team to cross the line. I’m pleased with my performance,” Cottrell said at the virtual media conference after KXIP’s 48-run loss to MI. “I have been working hard on my death bowling including my bowling partners. We are getting there, learning from our mistakes…I’m sure we will pull it off very soon. I will not say it is worrying. It is just a matter of time for us.” Against MI, Cottrell was not used at the death. He bowled a three-over spell early before ending his quota of four in the 13th over.
KXIP have now won just one out of four matches but Cottrell said his side will be back strongly. “I back my skipper 110 per cent and whatever decision he takes, he does it best for the team. It did not work today unfortunately but on another day, I’m sure it will work.
“We have a great bunch of guys. The coaching staff, Anil (Kumble) has been excellent. As our captain said in an earlier interview that we could have easily won three or four matches. “But unfortunately we have won only one. We firmly believe that we will bounce back. I have no doubt about that.” Asked what he thought about teams mostly choosing to chase after winning the toss, he said, “Cricket is a game of great uncertainties. When the coin is tossed, it is 50-50 that you will win or lose it.
“Batting or bowling first does not matter. It is just for the team to go there and do its best and play good cricket. Best team on the day will come out victorious,” he added. Mumbai Indians leg-spinner Rahul Chahar was all praise for the big-hitting duo of Kieron Pollard and Hardik Pandya. Pollard (47 not out) and Hardik (30 not out) added 67 runs in 23 balls to take MI to 191 for four from 83 for three in the 14th over.
In reply, KXIP were stopped at 143 for eight. “We have a lot of faith in big-hitting skills of Pollard and Hardik. Pollard almost took us to the victory in the last game against RCB. They are in good form and they can finish games in any situation,” the 21-year-old said.
He said Jasprit Bumrah and Krunal Pandya getting early wickets eased the pressure on other bowlers. “When you get wickets at the start, the bowlers who come later don’t have much pressure. They can go for wicket-taking deliveries or go for variation, it makes things easier.
“There is no pressure that I have to stop runs. It was easier for me, so I could attack,” said Chahar who took two wickets, including the prized scalp of KXIP skipper KL Rahul. Askedabout his performance, Chahar said, “There was help for the spinners in the pitch, there was a bit of turn and I was gaining confidence from it.
Asked why Pollard was sent ahead of Hardik in MI innings, he said, “I think our score at the start was a little less and Pollard played a really good innings inthe last match. There was confidence that Pollard will do it again if he was there.”
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