Nathu Singh joined Gujarat Lions at the start of the 2017 Indian Premier League.(BCCI)
Nathu Singh joined Gujarat Lions at the start of the 2017 Indian Premier League.(BCCI)

Was not intimidated by Chris Gayle, Virat Kohli: Gujarat Lions pacer Nathu Singh

Gujarat Lions’ Nathu Singh, who impressed with his performance in their game against Royal Challengers Bangalore, has credited his IPL team skipper Suresh Raina for not letting pressure affect him.
Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By Siddharth Vishwanathan
PUBLISHED ON MAY 03, 2017 08:46 PM IST

In the game between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Gujarat Lions at the M Chinnaswamy stadium, Chris Gayle and Virat Kohli strode out to the middle. Gayle had smashed 10,000 Twenty20 runs while Kohli had decimated attacks all over the world. It was a daunting task for Gujarat Lions, who opened with two inexperienced pace bowlers in Nathu Singh and Basil Thampi.

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However, Nathu bowled with pace and accuracy to both Kohli and Gayle. He swung the ball late and gave them nervous moments. His final analysis read 2-0-8-0, which is nothing spectacular on the scoreboard. However, for impact, it was crucial. His tight spell allowed Thampi to take Kohli’s wicket for 10 while Gayle was snapped up by Andrew Tye for 8. Royal Challengers Bangalore never got going and they went on to lose by seven wickets.

After the match, Aaron Finch, who smashed 72 off 34 balls, heaped praise on Nathu and Thampi for the way they bowled.

Key batsmen, no pressure

Ahead of the crucial match against Delhi Daredevils, Nathu spoke to Hindustan Times and said he did not allow himself to be intimidated. “When I was bowling, I did not have any pressure. I was just trying to concentrate on bowling the right areas. I did not want to think that it was Gayle and Kohli batting in front of me,” he said.

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The Gujarat Lions pacer was grateful to skipper Suresh Raina for backing him. “I want to say thank you to Raina that he gave me the first over. I was nervous when I was about to bowl the first over in the match against RCB but he gave me the confidence,” Nathu said.

Great equation with Basil Thampi

In the 2017 Indian Premier League, Gujarat Lions have opened the bowling with Indian bowlers who have had no international experience. The likes of Nathu Singh, Thampi, Shubham Agarwal and Pradeep Sangwan have got chances, with Thampi emerging a success with eight wickets from nine games. Nathu says he shares a good equation with Thampi.

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“I get plenty of confidence when I am bowling with Basil Thampi. When we were in Pune with the Indian team the last time, we bowled together. He is determined to improve his performance every single time and that motivates me to do well as well,” Nathu said.

With Gujarat Lions facing a must-win situation against Delhi Daredevils, Nathu will be determined to keep Gujarat Lions’ campaign alive in the tournament.

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