Sharjah: Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) win over Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) here on Monday was the outcome of “positive cricket”, said winning team captain KL Rahul after his team’s fifth consecutive win that took them to fourth spot and kept them interested in the Indian Premier League playoffs.
“It’s something we all collectively decided to do — to go out there and play positive cricket. We all believed that things can turn around for us. All five wins, it’s a complete team effort; it’s not one person and one individual. Every game, it’s been different person putting their hands up,” Rahul said after the match.
“Batting’s looking good; bowling is looking good. We have fielded really well throughout the tournament; happy that everything is coming together and fingers crossed that we can win two more games. It’s so hard when you are away from your family. With the bubble, you don’t have the close ones,” he said.
Rahul picked Mandeep Singh, who scored a 56-ball 66, for special mention. “The kind of toughness he has shown has rubbed off on other boys as well. The way he played today, it makes everyone emotional. He’s gone through a rough time, just to put his hand up, be there and finish the game for the team would make him proud and make his father proud,” said the captain.
On picking two leg-spinners — Murugan Ashwin and Ravi Bishnoi — in the playing XI, Rahul said: “When you have Anil Kumble as the coach, it’s not surprising that we are playing with two leg-spinners. It’s something that he had in his mind even before the IPL started. He always kept telling me that towards the second half or at some point that two leg-spinners is always an aggressive option. He’s worked really hard on the spinners, not just the guys who are playing but also the guys who haven’t played.”