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IPL 2018: How MS Dhoni’s backing has helped Chennai Super Kings’ Lungi Ngidi flourish

Lungi Ngidi ran through the Kings XI Punjab batting order and helped Chennai Super Kings restrict them fto a mere 153. CSK went on to win the game by five wickets.

cricket Updated: May 21, 2018 08:34 IST
Devarchit Varma
Devarchit Varma
Hindustan Times, Pune
IPL 2018,MS Dhoni,Chennai Super Kings
Lungi Ngidi (L) celebrates with M.S Dhoni during the Indian Premier League 2018 (IPL 2018) match between Kings XI Punjab and Chennai Super Kings in Pune on May 20, 2018. (AFP)

Young South African fast bowler Lungi Ngidi, who brought out his best performance for Chennai Super Kings (CSK) against Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) in IPL 2018 match here in Pune on Sunday, said he is relishing the opportunity to learn and play in front of big crowds. (MATCH REPORT)

Ngidi ran through the KXIP batting order with his spell of 4-1-10-4 to help CSK restrict them for a mere 153. Chennai went on to win the game by five wickets. (HIGHLIGHTS) (SCORECARD)

“First of all it was the last thing I expected; I never thought I would get picked up in the auction,” said Ngidi.

“But the way the coaching staff and MS Dhoni have backed me has been really amazing. The experience here has been eye-opening, I have never played in front of such crowds but then again this is where, the kind of stages (you find yourself in) you find out how good you are. It has been very good for me and I am looking forward to learn even more,” he added.

Ngidi praised the wicket at the Maharashtra Cricket Association (MCA) Stadium in Pune, where for the second game running CSK pacers dominated the game.

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“Having seen (Deepak) Chahar bowl that first over I had seen a bit of bounce. He really swings the ball so I knew there was a bit of movement. When I bowled my first ball I actually saw that it was a very quick wicket and it is playing a lot in my favour,” he said.

“I try to keep it simple as (much as) possible, try and pitch it on the fourth-stump line with it swinging away and swinging back in, let the batsman deal with that. It was a very good wicket for fast bowlers I would say, and it was very exciting to see Indian conditions offer such a fast-bowler friendly wicket,” Ngidi added.

The 22-year-old agreed with the experimentation of sending Chahar and Harbhajan Singh early in CSK’s chase of 154, which they achieved with five balls and five wickets to spare.

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“To be honest I was not a part of that conversation. Watching them go out and bat at that time I was thinking probably (it was to) get the run-rate high, they (had) put us under a bit of pressure upfront so to try (for about) five overs was fine,” he said.

The right-arm pacer said the win on Sunday would help CSK take confidence into their Qualifier 1 against Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH). CSK take on SRH on Tuesday at Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium.

“Taking a win into the qualifiers puts the guys in a good place,” he concluded.

First Published: May 21, 2018 08:26 IST