IPL: ‘De Kock knew he would make it count the day he got going’

NAVI MUMBAI: A bit of frustration came out in Quinton de Kock’s uncharacteristic celebration after his blazing hundred against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in the Indian Premier League (IPL) here. At the post-match press conference on Wednesday, Lucknow Super Giants’ (LSG) assistant coach Vijay Dahiya cited the possible reason behind the charged-up celebration by the South African opener.

“I will speak about Quinton. Sometimes he got runs, sometimes he didn’t (in the ongoing IPL). When we practiced, or when he was knocking or taking throw-downs, he was always saying he never felt so good and how come it happened that he wasn’t able to score,” Dahiya said.

He also said the day he got going, he would make it count and he did that today (Wednesday night). And the way they (De Kock and KL Rahul) batted for 20 overs, without any wicket falling, just fantastic,” added Dahiya. Thanks to De Kock’s spectacular unbeaten 140, the highest individual score this season, and skipper Rahul’s 68 not out, Lucknow posted an imposing 210 for no loss and then defended it by two runs to book a berth in the play-offs. Dahiya also praised Rahul, saying the skipper has always taken responsibility.

“If a captain says something and then does it, it sets a good standard for the team. The way KL has batted through the season, fabulous. He has always been in good rhythm, has taken responsibility and played for the team,” he added.

He credited the KKR batters for taking the game till the end and called it the best match of the season. “We should praise KKR too for the way they batted till the last ball and I feel it is the tournament’s best match,” he said. “Let us give credit where it is due. KKR batsmen were putting pressure on the bowlers and we will go back and see what can be done (rectified) because there is a possibility that we will be in the same situation again and try and correct things which are in our control.

“We have a very strong bowling unit and hopefully we will come back stronger,” he added. Lewis catch turning pointIn a match where the pendulum swung from one side to another, LSG scripted victory off the last ball, and Dahiya felt that the catch taken by Evin Lewis to dismiss Rinku Singh on the penultimate ball was the turning point.

“When you speak at the end, it was Lewis’s catch. When you need 21 runs off the last over and you score 16 in the first three balls, it seems things are (going) with the batting unit. “Rinku (Singh) showed his ability and Sunil Narine has played such knocks. So considering everything, it was Lewis’s catch which brought us into the game and the (Marcus) Stoinis yorker on the last ball,” said Dahiya.

He also lavished praise on pacer Mohsin Khan, saying the youngster has delivered in most of the games. “Mohsin Khan has been phenomenal. According to me, he has bowled best two overs for almost every game barring one game. (During) pressure time a youngster playing his first IPL coming back and delivering, it speaks not only about his skills but speaks about his mental side,” Dahiya signed off.