New Delhi: Apr 27, 2011
Royal Challengers Bangalore batsman Virat Kohli termed the Feroze Shah Kotla wicket as the best he has ever played on even as Delhi Daredevils captain Virender Sehwag declared that the track was not of his liking after the home team's three-wicket loss in an IPL match on Tuesday.
"It's a good wicket. I haven't played on a better wicket here than this. Not just the batsman, it had something for the bowlers too," Kohli said after leading his team to a three-wicket win while chasing a competitive 161-run target last night.
But Sehwag was not too impressed.
"The ball was not coming on to the bat. It's difficult to hit boundaries, until the ball is there to be hit. They cut a lot of grass, which we didn't want, but we have to carry on with whatever wicket we get," Sehwag said.
Kohli was delighted to have performed in front of his home crowd.
"I wanted to do well at this ground. Had a good idea about the Kotla pitch, but it's not that I scored because of that. You have to still play well," he said after being adjudged man-of-the-match for his fiery 56-run knock.
The stylish batsman from Delhi was full of praise for RCB teammate Chris Gayle.
"It's amazing batting with him. He takes the pressure off us. He has given us good starts in both the matches. He has been wonderful for us," Kohli said.
After a flying start, Bangalore lost their way for a while, losing three quick wickets, before getting their act together to prevail in the last over.
"The way we were going, at 12 an over; that's a very good rate no matter how big a target you are chasing. Then Warner made a brilliant run out. But if I had stayed and AB too, we could have finished the game three overs earlier.
"We knew we can bounce back. It's a big plus, big positive for us. Hope to take the home advantage in the next couple of games," Kohli said.
Despite his team's fourth defeat and third at home, Sehwag was hopeful of a turnaround. "It's just a matter of getting our act together. If we win a couple of games, we can still qualify," Sehwag said.
Sehwag, however, expressed disappointment over his team's overall showing in the match. "160 was a par score. But there were too many boundaries in the first six overs (of the RCB innings). We then came back with the wicket of Gayle and Kohli and the run out by Warner.
But I am disappointed. We have to bowl well, field well and there were too many misfields," he said. Sehwag said getting a solid start was of paramount importance in the tournament.
"If the openers don't get good starts then the middle order comes under pressure. And it's difficult to play under pressure," he said. Sehwag also refused to accept that the team lacks firepower in bowling.
"We have the bowlers but in T20 you never know. Even the best of bowlers can go for runs. You have to bowl to a good line and, length and instead of bowling bad deliveries, you have to force the batsman to make mistakes," he said.
Sehwag was gung-ho about playing against the Gautam Gambhir-led Kolkata Knight Riders in their next match. "Playing against Gautam is challenging and he is a very good player. Playing against a team that's coming off after good wins, it's a challenge. Hopefully, we'll get a good wicket," Sehwag said.
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