Delhi Daredevils v Rajasthan Royals, 3rd match, IPL April 20, 2008

Sehwag praises bowlers for victory

Cricinfo staff

Virender Sehwag, the captain of the Delhi Daredevils, praised his bowlers for their part in a comprehensive nine-wicket win over the Rajasthan Royals at the Feroz Shah Kotla yesterday.

"It was an easy match for us and credit goes to the bowlers, they made it easy to chase the target," Sehwag said. "I hope they carry on the good work later in the tournament."

Delhi's bowlers, led by seamer Farveez Maharoof, who took 2 or 11, restricted Rajasthan to 129 before Gautam Gambhir and Shikhar Dhawan scored unbeaten half-centuries to bring up victory in 15.1 overs. But Sehwag said tougher challenges lay ahead for his side. "It was an easy match, but one-sided matches do happen in Twenty20 cricket. The first two matches of the IPL were high-scoring affairs and we will have to face tougher teams ahead."

Sehwag said his team's preparations ahead of their match gave them the edge over Rajasthan. "We started practice 10 days before the match and it was our home ground. Moreover, the seniors in the side, including the international stars, helped the youngsters a lot. That clearly paid off."

Meanwhile, Shane Warne, the losing captain, said Rajasthan's fortunes will change once their foreign recruits join the team after completing their respective international and domestic commitments. "Graeme Smith is joining next week. The Pakistanis - Younis Khan and Kamran Akmal - are joining. The Englishman, Dimitri Mascarenhas, is an exciting player, and he is also joining soon.

"So, I am pretty confident that we will give tougher competition to other teams in the tournament," Warne said, while admitting that the team's strategy went awry. "It was one of those days when we could not implement our plans and came short of ideas."

Warne also criticised the England board for the not allowing their players to participate in the tournament's first edition. "It is a shame that exciting players like [Kevin] Pietersen are not playing in the IPL. It is ridiculous of the ECB to stop them."