IPL 2017
When a stringent Gambhir changed the dressing room tone
By B Dixit - Apr 26, 2017 7:53 am
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During the innings break of the Kolkata Knight Riders vs Royal Challengers Bangalore, captain of Knight Riders, Gautam Gambhir, pepped up his boys with his talk which was a blend of anger and motivation. After being put into bat, Knight Riders were bundled out for 131 in 19.3 overs. From being 65-1 during the powerplay to 131-10 was unacceptable to Gambhir.

A target of 132 seemed paltry against a batting line-up which consisted of Virat Kohli, Chris Gayle and AB de Villiers. Knight Riders’ bowlers had to deliver something special in order to restrict the visiting batsmen. One of the reason why Gambhir was fuming was also their recent loss to Gujarat Lions.

“I wanted intensity from my team-mates. I wanted them to fight. I wanted them to win,” Gambhir said of his mid-innings address in his column for Hindustan Times. “I told them whoever dropped on intent should understand that this could be his last game for KKR, at least in my captaincy.”

The team provided instant results as Virat Kohli was dismissed in the first over itself. Nathan Coulter-Nile, who was declared Man of the Match, was on a roll as he registered figures of 3-0-21-3. He was well supported by Chris Woakes and Colin de Grandhomme, both of whom picked up three wickets apiece.

“The Aussie bowled like the wind and I supported him with attacking fields,” Gambhir said. “My being under the helmet [at silly point] was more of a statement than a catching position.”

Kolkata Knight Riders are scheduled to face Rising Pune Supergiant today in Pune. Nathan Coulter-Nile has been given rest for this match and has not even travelled with the team.