With the win over KKR, Rahul Dravid (left) seems to be the most happy man on earth © IANS
With the win over KKR, Rahul Dravid (left) seems to be the happiest man on earth © IANS

Former champion, Rajasthan Royals (RR) seem to have a good time with their mentor and one-off India‘s greatest batsman, Rahul Dravid, as his tips and advice seem to be working perfectly in favour of the young RR team. Having to earn a must win in the do or die match against defending champions, Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at Brabourne Stadium in Mumbai on Saturday, RR perished with a thrilling nine-run win over the defending champions and cementing its place in the playoffs. READ: Shane Watson attributes hard work ahead of RR-KKR tie for success

With this win, Dravid seems to be the happiest man on earth as his wealth of experience is truly working out for the young RR squad and the patience is finally paying off. In an interview with iplt20.com, he said, “I am very happy that we could make it this time. It was something that was much needed, especially after what happened in the last season. We were disappointed last year but it is good that we learned from our mistakes. It is tough competition out here and not at all easy to make it to the top four. I am glad that we played some good cricket throughout this tournament.” READ: Kallis defends inclusion of Mahmood for crucial tie vs RR

On being asked of beating the defending champions feels special, he frankly replied, “Oh, it does. It was a tight, tough game. Our spot was in line and to beat the defending champions to get there was simply amazing. Look at the firepower they have, look at the team they have. I am very proud of the boys with the way they responded.” READ: Gautam Gambhir: KKR messed up the game against RR

“We have a really good group of individuals. Watson and Smith are quality people besides being quality cricketers. It was a collective decision in which Watto [Watson] was an active part of. He realized that his role as a batsman and a bowler was a lot more important to us than as a captain. It was such a nice thing to see that we made the change and it allowed Watson to play freely. We saw the result today. Credit to him that he recognised it and showed the willingness to take that call,” he added.

On being asked if it was the most important game of all, he said, “I hope this wasn’t the most important game of the season for us. I hope there is a lot more to come. We have not played our best cricket so far. There are a lot of areas where we can work on and improve and hopefully we will see that in the next few games.”

Speaking about the team’s young talent, he said, “We are forced to because we have a young team and we rely a lot on our young Indian talent. We also push them out there, we believe in them and give them opportunities to play an important role in crucial positions. In a lot of big teams these young guys do not get to play important roles because they depend on their senior players for that.”

“In a team like ours we know that if we want to succeed our juniors have to play an important role, and we give them the confidence to do so and we back them. We hear them out, we give them clarity of roles. It is lovely to see them succeed. It is very satisfying to work with a group of youngsters and bring them along,” he added.

On being asked about the risk of bringing in inexperienced Barinder Saran for the all important game, he clamly replied, “It was but we have seen him bowl beautifully in the nets. He had a tough game today and that happens because it is not easy to perform under such pressure in your first game. But I believe he has a great potential and we are going to hear a lot about him in the future.”