Mohali: May 11, 2011
Back in the play-off race after upsetting table toppers Mumbai Indians by 76 runs in an IPL match here on Tuesday, Kings XI Punjab skipper Adam Gilchrist hoped that the win will reverse his side's fortune in the ongoing Twenty20 tournament.
After posting a challenging 163 for eight on the board, Kings XI bowled out a formidable Mumbai batting line-up for a paltry 87 in 12.5 overs to notch up the stunning a victory.
The win not only took Kings XI to the ninth position in the team standings with eight points from 10 games, but also kept their hopes alive of progressing to the play-off stage of the tournament.
"It's a great turn around. Catches were dropped but otherwise it was good performance. It's a funny world and it can change like this. We have got the foot in that door and hopefully it will keep open. We are back alive," Gilchrist said after the match.
He, however, felt that Kings XI fell a few runs short after making an impressive start to their innings.
At one stage Kings XI were coasting at 129 for two but lost as many as six wickets for just 39 runs in the last five overs to see their innings go haywire from a comfortable position.
"I thought we were 15-20 runs short after the start. But fortunately Dinesh Karthik and couple of guys closed it," Gilchrist said.
"It was a better performance, it was an all-round performance from us. We put up a respectable total though we finished a little bit short of what we had thought," Gilchrist said at the post-match press conference at the Punjab Cricket Association stadium.
"The beauty of this (T20) format is that anyone can beat anyone. The win is a tremendous boost for us, more than the fact that it keeps us alive in the tournament," he added.
Lauding his batsmen, the former Australian wicket-keeper said Kings XI had put up a solid batting effort today.
He pointed out that it was Kings XI's batting that had let the team down in the earlier matches of the tournament.
Gilchrist also had words of praise for Mumbai speedster Lasith Malinga, who is the highest wicket-taker in the tournament with 26 scalps.
"He (Malinga) has come of age. He is the most dangerous T20 bowler. He has a lethal yorker, slipping bouncer and a lot of variation in his bowling," he said.
The Kings XI captain was also of the view that the loss won't affect Mumbai much.
Asked about Bollywood star and Kings XI co-owner Priety Zinta's motivational speech to the teammates on Sunday after it's loss to Pune Warriors, Gilchrist said, "She is a talented, articulate and intelligent lady. She has full belief in the team's abilities and told us to focus away from the defeats we had suffered and give our best."
Meanwhile, Mumbai Indians all-rounder Kieron Pollard refused to buy the suggestions that overconfidence has let the team down today against bottom-ranked Kings XI.
"No, we were not over confident. We came here to win," he said, adding that it was just one of those days when they played "bad cricket".
"Sometimes, it happens and we got to learn from it," Pollard said.
Asked whether he is in favour of a window in ICC's Future Tours Programme for the IPL, Pollard said, "It would be great for all the players."
Mumbai Indians skipper Sachin Tendulkar blamed his batters for the shocking loss and said it was a completely off day for his side today.
"It was one of the best tracks we have played on but it didn't just go our way. It was one of those days. We lost those wickets," he said.
"There was a decision to make whether to continue at that run-rate or slow up... there was a choice to be made up. We continued to be positive and it doesn't matter that wickets fell," Tendulkar added.
Kings XI left-arm spinner Bhargav Bhatt, who was adjudged man-of-the-match for his impressive spell of four for 22, said he did not do anything extra ordinary and was just content in rectifying his mistakes.
"I just bowled my normal bowling and avoided repeating the mistakes from the previous games," he said.
Asked about how it feels playing alongside a legend like Gilchrist, Bhatt said, "It's like a dream to play with Gilchrist. I want to learn a lot from him."