IPL Extras: Fighting brand of cricket makes RR tough, says Dravid
Rajasthan Royals mentor Rahul Dravid says his side do not mind being called ‘underdogs’ but their fighting brand of cricket makes them a tough side to beat.
Dravid, who led the team to the play-offs last season, said his side's stress has been to assign clear roles for each players and try to execute plans on the field.
"If you look at our team on paper, you would call us underdogs ... because we don't have those stars. But we don't mind the tag. It does not bother us anymore. We know every team is a good team and we have to perform. We don't think too far ahead," Dravid said.
"We get different people to perform. We don't rely on a few stars. People who play against us know that we will always fight. We might not win every game, but we will always fight and compete. We will get the best out of our talent. I think that is something that you could classify as RR, and probably call it the RR brand of cricket," he said.
Asked how different his new role as mentor from leading the side, Dravid said, "The pressure is lot less because I don't captain the team. It is about strategy and planning. It involves working with the likes of Paddy Upton, Zubin Bharucha and Monty Desai, and trying to create a good environment for the players so they get what they need.
"And in the end, they have to do their job to perform in the middle. So we just try and create a good environment and give them a chance to perform and play at their best. And we do lot of the planning and preparation for them, so they have enough information when they go into the game. It gives them the best chance to succeed," he was quoted as saying by the official IPL website.
The former Indian captain said what matters in T20 cricket was the clarity of roles of the players and execution of plans.
"Roles are important. We sit down with players at start of every season and tell them why they are in this team and what we think their roles would be. Of course, there needs to be certain amount of flexibility, but still we explain to them where exactly they might be batting and bowling and what they should practice and how we feel they should practice," he said.
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Image: Rahul Dravid
We are very much in the tournament: Rohit
Boosted by their surprise win over Rajasthan Royals following a string of reverses, Mumbai Indians skipper Rohit Sharma says his team is still ‘very much in the tournament’ in the ongoing Indian Premier League.
"Although things didn't go our way, we have to now keep moving forward. You never know what can happen; we are still very much in the tournament," said the Mumbai Indians captain after the victory over Royals.
A brisk 19-ball 40 by Rohit, after a solid opening stand between Mike Hussey and Lendl Simons, helped MI set a challenging target against the 'hosts' in Ahmedabad on Monday.
Having garnered eight points so far, the defending champions are looking forward to keep themselves in the hunt for a place in the playoffs. MI had a torrid time in the first leg of the event in UAE, failing to win a single game.
"I know that the squad we have got is a talented one and has a lot of potential. But we were not able to put things together at the start of the tournament. We lost five out of five games in the beginning – that was not acceptable. With a team like this, I wasn't excepting such a performance. But it happens. We have to move on now."
Rohit said he had a pleasant experience with the Ahmedabad crowd.
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Image: Rohit Sharma
Pietersen fined Rs 12 lakh for slow over rate
Delhi Daredevils captain Kevin Pietersen was slapped with a fine of Rs 12 lakh for maintaining slow over rate during his side's IPL game against Kings XI Punjab in New Delhi.
"Delhi Daredevils captain Kevin Pietersen has been fined after the team maintained a slow over rate during last evening's Pepsi IPL match against Kings XI Punjab in Delhi.
"Since it was his first offence of the season under the IPL’s Code of Conduct relating to minimum over-rate offences, Mr Pietersen was fined Rs 12 lakh," the IPL said.
Delhi Daredevils suffered their seventh consecutive loss this IPL season as they went down to table-toppers Kings XI Punjab by four wickets in their last game at Feroze Shah Kotla on Monday.
Image: Kevin Pietersen during a Delhi practice session