In my last article, I had written about how a team can find ways to lose when it is going through a bad patch. Fortunately, there is something more in that theory which says that teams on a winning spree find ways to win a lost match as was shown by the Delhi Daredevils on Wednesday.
It is wins such as these that really motivate a team and makes it feel unstoppable. The icing on the cake was that this hard-fought victory ensured us a place in the semifinals, and that too despite us playing one game less than the others.
I am very happy to see that the boys were able to welcome Virender Sehwag back with a win, and we hope to keep the momentum going in our remaining games as well. This can also be a dangerous phase for us, as we prepare for the semifinals.
We will be playing against teams who desperately need to win to keep their semifinal hopes alive. Since we are already there, we must not let complacency — or the need to experiment — come in the way of our winning streak. These are the games we will have win in order to keep ourselves in the rhythm as we go into the all-important semifinal.
The Kings XI Punjab are a very good team, but they have let themselves down by not being consistent. Yuvraj Singh himself has shown flashes of brilliance, like in the game against Chennai. They have received a setback in the form of an injury to Mahela Jayawardene. He was in very good form for Punjab, and as a seasoned player, had won them a couple of games as well.
Punjab’s bowling has been strengthened by the return of Brett Lee. He was bowling really fast in his last game and looks to be getting into good form before the T20 World Cup.
For us, we might see a couple of changes now and I will not be surprised if Daniel Vettori gets a look-in today. The bowling has been the underrated aspect of our success, but Dirk Nannes, Ashish Nehra and the slow bowlers have all been exceptional right through the tournament. We have shown hunger so far, and that is why we are at the top of the table at the moment. From here on, we need to be ruthless and greedy in order to keep the intensity going. This is one of the greatest challenges for me as a cricketer since I played for Australia, and it would give me great pleasure if we go on a record-making winning streak.
Delhi should keep the winning habit going regardless of the quality of opposition we come up against.