Ravichandran Ashwin (R)    AFP
Ravichandran Ashwin (R) AFP

A team’s character is very well defined by how they defend a low score in T20s. Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) did just that in match 22 of the ongoing VIVO IPL 2018 versus hosts Delhi Daredevils (DD). Defending 144, KXIP’s bowlers combined to strangle the opposition to 139 for 8. As a result, skipper Ravichandran Ashwin lauded his team’s effort, and stated that “once you defend a low score, then you can say anyone can win the game for us.” In addition, he pointed out DD’s flaws that resulted in their 4-run defeat at Ferozshah Kotla.

There was a lot of debate on who will bowl the 19th over. Barinder Sran had an awful night before he turned it on in the penultimate over, and gave enough runs to defend for Mujeeb Ur Rahman. Shedding light on this aspect in the post-match conference, Ashwin said, “We were discussing about what to be bowling in the 19th than whom to bowl because I had made up my mind to bowl Mujeeb for the final over. AJ (Andrew Tye) was my best bowler of the day, so bowled him early because if he got Shreyas Iyer, then that’s the game.”

Praising KXIP’s character, Ashwin added, “Once you defend a low score, then you can say anyone can win the game for us. ” At halfway stage, they would have talked about how defending such totals keeps a side in good shape going forward. No doubt, KXIP would be thrilled to bits with the outcome of the match.

Lastly, Ashwin shared where, according to him, DD conceded the game. “They wanted to attack up front in the first six and it actually fell in our hands because it wasn’t a wicket to hit straightaway,” he concluded.