Fielding, bowling made the difference for Super Kings: Fleming

The Chennai Super Kings turned their perceived weaknesses into strengths while defeating the Pune Warriors by 25 runs in their Indian Premier League game here Monday night, according to winning team’s coach Stephen Fleming.

By Agencies

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Published: Thu 28 Apr 2011, 12:56 AM

Last updated: Mon 6 Apr 2015, 6:28 PM

“We look to replicate the standards in fielding. Today, the situation was that we were desperate to win. It helps the bowler to be bit more confident and gives the skipper much more confidence to dictate the game more,” Fleming said at the customary post-match media conference.

“We need to keep improving in that area. We were embarrassed with our fielding in the last game and we were desperate to make the difference,” he added. Fleming said Super Kings were looking at a score in the region of 160, but the loss of wickets in the mid-phase of the innings forced them to revise the target. Asked to bat first, Super Kings made 142 for six in their quota of 20 overs, but hit back to restrict Pune Warriors to 117 for nine.

“We knew it was a low par score. We knew it was difficult as our best players were struggling. We thought we could get 160, but we adjusted that to 150. In the end, we were 15 and odd runs short,” he observed. Thus, it was left to their bowlers and fielders to step up and perform, which they did, an obviously relieved Fleming said.

“We knew we had to bowl well and field well. We created pressure and increased the pressure on the rival batsmen as the match wore on. “When they were making six runs an over in the initial overs, we knew we had a good chance today to win the match. Had Jesse Ryder got his way and created a platform for Yuvraj, then it would have been difficult,” said Fleming, former New Zealand captain.

“One of our key thoughts was to taking early wickets and if the fielders happened to dominate, it will give the bowlers more confidence,” Fleming added.

The coach reserved special praise for off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin whose early strikes opened the doors for Super Kings.

“He (Ashwin) has always been a match-winner for us. He is always a confident bowler and transforms himself well as he takes wickets. He is working hard with the other spinners and also with the International players, getting to know on improving his strengths.”

“The last four months in international cricket had really made him a thinking cricketer. Ashwin is a very valuable asset to the team. His few variations always help him, like the manner in which he dismissed Jesse Ryder with his arm ball today,” Fleming pointed out.

Asked about Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s captaincy, Fleming confirmed the long-held belief that the skipper depended more on gut feeling and his reading of the game rather than any heavy advance planning. “He is not too much on planning. His captaincy is based on information on the field like how the pitch plays and the manner in which the opposition is batting. There is a gut feel about his captaincy.”

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