MS Dhoni has helped Steve Smith brilliantly in IPL 2017: Manoj Tiwary | ipl 2017 | Hindustan Times
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MS Dhoni has helped Steve Smith brilliantly in IPL 2017: Manoj Tiwary

Rising Pune Supergiant are currently third in the IPL 2017 points table and Manoj Tiwary attributes the rise of the team after early setbacks to the way Australian skipper Steve Smith and MS Dhoni have combined.

ipl 2017 Updated: May 11, 2017 21:05 IST
Siddharth Vishwanathan
IPL 2017
While Mahendra Singh Dhoni (L) was the Rising Pune Supergiant captain last year,Steven Smith took over from the Indian in IPL 2017.(AFP)

Rising Pune Supergiant are one win away from sealing their spot in the play-offs and Manoj Tiwary believes the co-operation between former India skipper MS Dhoni and Australia captain Steve Smith has been a key factor in the team’s rise after early setbacks.

Speaking at a media conference on the eve the IPL 2017 clash against Delhi Daredevils on Thursday at the Ferozeshah Kotla, the RPS batsman said Dhoni being the wicketkeeper made it ideal for him to help out Smith.

“Dhoni is in the best position to guide the players. He has a 360 degree view on the field. He manoeuvres the field as Smith is also under pressure because he has to make decisions as to who to bowl from each end. It is not humanly possible to look at each and every thing,” Tiwary said.

READ | Rising Pune Supergiant eye IPL 2017 playoffs in clash against Delhi Daredevils

When asked about the captaincy style of Smith, the former India batsman said, “Smith does not talk too much off the field. He is a bit reserved. On the field, he is aggressive.”

Not taking Delhi Daredevils lightly

In the last encounter between Rising Pune Supergiant and Delhi Daredevils in Pune, Sanju Samson’s century resulted in Rising Pune Supergiant losing by 97 runs. Tiwary said the team is not taking Delhi Daredevils lightly.

“This match is very important for us. Delhi Daredevils will be coming pretty hard at us. We are not going to make special plans. We will face a tough challenge,” Tiwary said.

READ | Why MS Dhoni, Mumbai Indians continue to dominate IPL 2017

Tiwary said the brand of cricket played by the likes of Rishabh Pant and Samson makes Delhi Daredevils even more dangerous at home. “They have chased 200 here and some of the youngsters are playing really well. Rishabh Pant has no fear and neither does Sanju. When players play with a positive intent, we are aware of the damage they can do.”

Planned to play IPL 2017 aggressively

The former India player is not known for his big-hitting capabilities. However, in IPL 2017, he has the second-best strike-rate among Rising Pune Supergiant batsmen who have played more than five matches. His strike-rate of 147.4 is second only to Rahul Tripathi’s 152. Tiwary said he had planned to increase his strike-rate.

“When you come to IPL, sometimes a role is given which goes against your nature. My challenge was to bat with a high strike-rate because that is where the format is heading,” Tiwary said.