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IPL 2014: Vinay Kumar says he is used to playing under pressure

Vinay Kumar bowled the last over defending nine runs © IANS
Vinay Kumar (Center) bowled the last over defending nine runs © IANS

Sharjah: Apr 25, 2014

Pacer R Vinay Kumar, who held his nerves in the last over to churn out a dramatic victory for Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), said he would like to put up a similar show every time for his team in the ongoing IPL.

Needing just nine off the last over, Royal Challengers Bangalore could manage only seven, thanks largely to Vinay Kumar’s superb bowling, besides a breathtaking catch by Chris Lynn that enabled the Knight Riders stage a dramatic fightback to pull off a two-run win in a thrilling last-ball finish here last night.

“This performance will help me become a more matured bowler and keep me high on confidence going into the remaining games. Hopefully, I can turn up for my team every time and put up a good show,” said Vinay Kumar.

Vinay, who had earlier been a part of the RCB outfit, said he had faced such tense situations in the past also and had successfully defended totals in the last over.

“I had successfully defended quite a few games in the last over last year. I am used to being under such tense situations and I try to get better with every outing. Even while practising, I try to put myself into such situations during practise, which has helped me perform when needed,” he said.

Elaborating on what was going through his mind when he was asked to bowl the final over, Vinay explained: “I just backed myself to bowl in the areas that were my strengths. At the start of my run-up, I told myself that I had to stick to my plans and bowl at the right length.

“I knew if I bowled in those areas close to a hundred percent  then it would be very difficult for the batsmen to score runs. I backed my abilities and it paid off.”

“It feels really great to win a thriller that went down till the last over. This was a very important game for us after our loss in the previous game. It was a much needed win for the team and we are happy that we came out winning at the end of it,” Vinay added.

On his plan to bowl to two power-hitters — Albie Morkel and AB de Villiers — in the last over, the pacer said, “I had different plans for different batsmen and I just bowled according to my strengths. I knew if I bowled to Albie to his strengths, then he would hit me out of the park. I needed to bowl in the areas that would make it difficult for him to hit.

“I varied my pace on the first ball to Morkel, then bowled at a good length to AB, and then bowled outside off to Morkel and got AB’s wicket off the next ball.”

Vinay admitted that he thought it was a six when the ball soared towards the boundary off De Villiers’ bat, but said it was Lynn’s “amazing catch” that turned the match around.

“I thought the ball had gone for a six. Chris Lynn took an amazing catch. I even thought that he had crossed the boundary line after taking the catch. He made sure that he was inside the boundary line. I would say it was an amazing presence of mind and a superb catch to turn the match on its head,” said Vinay Kumar.

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