Once again as I write this column on match day, I have a mixed feeling. I am anxious and glad that I have all of you to talk to. We will leave for the ground in sometime to take on the Auckland Aces in our vital Game 2 in Cape Town. The sky outside my hotel room is clear and blue and I can admire the Table Mountain in all its splendour. I hope the guys in our group have similar clarity and we too can stand in splendour during the tournament.
The team meetings after a loss don’t have to be a mourning gathering. That is why we ensure that an early tone is set for these interactions. On Monday, I am thinking of requesting Brett Lee and Sunil Narine to start the talking. Brett is very good with his story-telling and understandably has a bagful of stories given his time in the Australia dressing room.
Sunil, well, he is a man of few but relevant words. After winning the T20 World Cup I am sure he will have some stories to narrate. If not from the on-field action, maybe from the West Indian celebrations, which are fun to watch. More than anything, it is a pleasure to listen to his West Indian accent which I call “musical”.
Once they do that, the coaching staff and I will do some plain talking. We need to maintain the simplicity of our mission and ensure no one gets overawed by the situation. Like I said earlier, all we need is better application from the batsmen. I am sure things will click sooner than later.
We are well equipped with Brendon’s flair, Bisla’s street-smart approach, Kallis’s solidity, Yusuf’s aggression and Tiwary’s match-winning abilities.
As for my batting, I have been hitting the ball well but not being able to convert the starts. It is frustrating but I think I am doing what needs to be done.
In Sri Lanka, during the World Cup, I was hitting a lot of balls in the nets. In South Africa, the sessions have been no different. I generally have long net sessions. This has nothing to do with a technical flaw but about setting the mind on course. I am confident of doing it.
The good thing is that our KKR fans are showing a lot of faith. A friend tells me that amidst the festivities, our supporters from Kolkata are optimistic of our good show. And I am reliably informed that one Puja pandal is planning to have cutouts of some KKR cricketers and Shah Rukh Khan.
While this adulation is flattering, it gets intimidating as well. Let’s hope we can live up to expectations.
(360 Corporate Relations)
The writer is the KKR captain