We need to compete every single ball against Chennai: Sangakarra

Deccan Chargers skipper Kumar Sangakarra writes in The Times Of India that winning the next two ties will bring them back into the tournament. “There’s no doubt that we still have plenty of work ahead of us; but, after a disastrous five game losing streak, it’s pleasing that we are now showing genuine signs of recovery. We’ve taken five out of the eight points possible in our last four matches and we are catching the rest of the points table,” writes Sangakkara, adding that Friday’s game is going to be a tough one.

“Chennai have had an unusually inconsistent season so they will be desperate to get things back on track. We just have to make sure we compete every single ball and believe in ourselves completely. If we do, we’ll give ourselves a great chance of picking up two points.”

Meanwhile Team Chennai might have defeated Hyderabad on the back of Ravindra Jadeja’s heroics in the first leg, but things won’t be that easy this time around. Kumar Sangakkara’s men have shown signs of recovery, defeating Pune twice; while Chennai, after a series of home losses, find themselves in a spot, says a report in TOI.

In their losses against Punjab and Kolkata, Chennai’s middle-order woes came to the fore and it’s time MS Dhoni & Company get their house in order.  “The boundaries didn’t exactly come and that’s why we were 15-20 runs short. We need to tighten up very soon,” coach Stephen Fleming said, after their loss to Kolkata. A couple of rigorous practice sessions followed since then and it’s to be seen how the likes of MS Dhoni, Suresh Raina, Albie Morkel and Ravindra Jadeja turn it around.

According to Stephen Flemming, he has been surprised by the number of last-over or last-ball finishes this year. “It’s a reflection of how close the competition is and the amount of pressure each team is under to collect the two points on offer. While it’s great for viewers, it’s heart-breaking for teams and certainly not great for the health of coaches! With sides playing their best batsmen up the order, the younger and inexperienced ones are exposed to the rival team’s best bowlers. So it is an uneven equation and mistakes are being made as a result,” Flemming writes in Hindustan Times.

Meanwhile the Delhi Daredevilsplayers, especially the foreigners, are making good use of the rare break. According to a report in Hindustan Times, South Africans Morne Morkel and Roelof van der Merwe, Sri Lankan Mahela Jayawardene and New Zealander Ross Taylor turned up in Agra with their partners to see the world famous Taj Mahal on Thursday. “The break and these excursions will make the Daredevils even more dangerous when they take the field for their next encounter against the Knight Riders in their backyard a few days from now.”