His team put up a formidable total on the board but Royal Challengers Bangalore Daniel Vettori conceded he went through quite a few nervy moments during the 26-run win over Pune Warriors till the time his rival number Yuvraj Singh was on the crease.
Vettori was pleased that his ploy to bring a rather off-colour Zaheer Khan back into the attack early worked as the pacer took the vital wicket of Yuvraj (41) at a time when the dashing left-hander threatened to take the match away from the home side.
“There were a few scares along the way. The bowlers have stepped up in the previous two matches. Zaheer is our best bowler, we took a chance bringing him on a little earlier, against Yuvraj, and fortunately it worked,” Vettori said after the match last night.
Vettori said 181 was always going to be a difficult task for Pune.
“Right from the start, 180 was always going to be a difficult chase. Kohli and Gayle and then Zaheer and Aravind led the way,” he said.
Yuvraj, on the other hand, felt his side could not score enough runs at the start of innings.
“I think we didn’t get enough runs in the first six overs. We gave 20 runs extra on the field. We decided not to lose too many wickets at the top, but Jesse and Manish couldn’t get enough runs, and Bangalore’s bowlers were good,” Yuvraj said.
The Pune skipper is worried that the team is not able to click as a unit.
“I am playing well as batsman but the team is not able to. The whole team needs to contribute,” he said.
Man of the match Virat Kohli was delighted to have got the Orange Cap. Kohli, during his blazing knock of 67, overtook Sachin Tendulkar at the the top of the run chart.
“It’s the first time in four years I am wearing the Orange Cap. It’s an honour if you look at the top five (that has names like Tendulkar and Jacques Kallis),” he said.
Kohli said the plan was to avoid slogging the ball.
“The gameplan was working for me. The wicket was good and the plan was not to slog the ball, but to run through with the ball.”
Being the only player to be retained in the Bangalore side, it is understandable that Kohli would be under some sort of pressure.
“I think as a cricketer you have to take pressure, if the franchise retained me they have shown faith in me. The first two matches I didn’t score well, but the next few it got better. Very happy winning three in a row,” he said.
Chris Gayle, who laid the foundation with a hurricane knock at the top of the order, too was happy.
“Very happy, three wins in a row. Words can’t explain.
There’s going to be a big celebration tonight, I’m looking forward to that as well,” the big—hitting opener from the West Indies said.
“Kohli was outstanding, Zaheer and the skipper too played their part.”
Asked about his own performance, he said, “It was a good wicket to bat on and I enjoyed every moment,” he said.
Keywords: IPL Season IV