Delhi Daredevils v Kolkata Knight Riders, IPL 2017, Delhi April 18, 2017

We had a plan and it succeeded - Yusuf

ESPNcricinfo staff

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'We have a really good middle order' - Coulter-Nile

Kolkata Knight Riders had planned to score a boundary in every over and rotate strike during their chase against Delhi Daredevils at the Feroz Shah Kotla, and Yusuf Pathan said they had largely succeeded in pulling it off despite a poor start.

Coming into bat with KKR on 21 for 3, Yusuf scored a 39-ball 59 and put on 110 in 72 balls with Manish Pandey, who was unbeaten on 69 after hitting the winning runs with a ball to spare.

"We had a good game plan and it succeeded. We were trying to get a boundary or a six in every over regardless of who the bowler was and to keep rotating the strike," Yusuf told after the match. "We were trying to put the bowlers and the captain under pressure so that they commit a mistake and so do the fielders.

"The bowlers were becoming aggressive and I was enjoying that. When the bowler comes aggressively at you, I feel good because he wants to get me out and that leads to a good contest. When I came in to bat I was middling the ball well. The bowlers were under pressure. I could feel that they wanted my wicket. So, I was thinking that 'I have to stay at the wicket. As long as I am there the match is ours.' I was converting the boundary balls into boundaries and the strike was rotating as well; so that was a good start."

Yusuf, who scored 21 not out and 6 in his previous two innings, praised Pandey's batting and underscored the importance of KKR not being "confused" by Daredevils' plans. "Delhi has a good bowling line-up and Zaheer is captaining them really well," Yusuf said. "His field placement was also really good, but we had to hold ourselves back and stay calm. We discussed that we have to bat according to the way we want to and not to the field that they were placing.

"We told ourselves that we will play our shots because their field placements were really good and could confuse the batsman. But we discussed that we shouldn't get confused and back ourselves and continue playing our shots whether it's going over the top or along the ground. The wicket was good and the outfield fast, so that too was helpful."

Before Yusuf and Pandey had their match-winning partnership, KKR's bowling effort had been spearheaded by Australian fast bowler Nathan Coulter-Nile, who was playing his first game of the season and his first for his new IPL franchise. Coulter-Nile was Man of the Match for his spell of 3 for 22, which limited Daredevils to 168 for 7, and later spoke of how he had recovered from a lumbar bone stress injury.

"Making a comeback from injury, I had to focus on my role," Coulter-Nile said. "Getting back was tough; it was a long time out of the game. Playing T20 cricket, doing well and contributing to the win, all worth it in the end."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • simonp3164620 on April 18, 2017, 19:54 GMT

    ADAM_LEBAN ON APRIL 18, 2017, 17:05 GMT

    I agree with SPAMASTER that Pathan is a one match wonder per IPL season. I Hope he can get atleast one more match winning innings this season to prove us wrong.

  • mirzat2397120 on April 18, 2017, 19:08 GMT

    yusuf bhai and Manish is well batting and win mor KKR congratulations and any more time sem proformas

  • Adam on April 18, 2017, 17:05 GMT

    SPAMASTER Are you okay bud? You seem emotionally invested.

  • Dheeban on April 18, 2017, 15:08 GMT

    Oh please.. That was a fluke innings. This guy plays one or two innings every IPL and then goes missing. That was the one Yusuf Pathan win for the season. They lost three early wickets and the stage was set was this fluke batsman to throw around his bat with no pressure and it came off.

  • PIOPX on April 18, 2017, 14:15 GMT

    KKR do have a strong and stable middle order.Thats whats makes them always the better team.No too many chop and change.When a team is changing their players for every match the players would not be able to settle down.Yes you will have to make changes but not too excessive.This is what hurting team like RCB.Also,RCB is depending too much on the overseas players.I totally agree with Coulter-Nile.Look at the team and recognised that key players like Gambir,Utapa,Umish Yadav,Patan , Panday and Narine remain on the team for a long time.

  • Steve on April 18, 2017, 12:40 GMT

    First of all, 169 isn't a very tough target. It's that kind of total where the chasing teams don't always come out with a clear strategy. Be a bit lethargic for 2-3 overs and suddenly the RRR will climb over 10 and the pressure builds.

  • ankudh9137467 on April 18, 2017, 12:11 GMT

    Karun Nair also scored 1 run in a Coulter-Nile over which created lots of pressure on Pant & Morris.

  • ankudh9137467 on April 18, 2017, 12:06 GMT

    Cummins was expensive in his 2 overs in power play which reduced run rate pressure on KKR. Mishra who takes wickets in run rate pressure situations was nullified.

  •   Cricinfouser on April 18, 2017, 9:24 GMT

    It was not your game plan that worked Yusuf. It was the poor game plan of Zaheer Khan and Co which did not work. Zaheer Khan did not use the right batsman at the right time to score at least 10 more runs and did not use the right bowler at the right time to contain boundaries and sixes.

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