Mohali: Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) skipper Ravichandran Ashwin said his side have a lot of scope for improvement after they encountered yet another ‘too close’ game in the ongoing IPL against Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) here Monday night.
KL Rahul (71 n o) and Mayank Agarwal (55) struck fluent half centuries to guide KXIP to a six-wicket win over Sunrisers Hyderabad in a nail-bitting contest here. Chasing 151 for a win, Kings XI were coasting at 132 for one before three quick wickets took the game to the wire.
“Too close for comfort. We have had really close games, the biggest positive for me is there is scope for improvement,” Ashwin said after the game.
Ashwin backed Mujeeb Ur Rahman, stating that the Afghan spinner is an asset who can be used upfront or during any part of the innings.
“Mujeeb knows Mohali very well and as a spinner you need to know the lengths and speeds to bowl at. Sometimes the figures don’t do justice, but I think Mujeeb bowled well today (Monday),” pointed out Ashwin.
“You do use spinners with the new ball and Mujeeb has done it all his life for Afghanistan. And it was a good match-up between (Jonny) Bairstow and Mujeeb,” added the skipper.
SRH skipper Bhuvneshwar Kumar said he was happy with his bowlers’ efforts, especially with the dew playing a major factor in the second innings.
“Of course it is hard but I am pretty happy with the way we bowled with the dew around. It is a bit difficult with yorkers and slower balls, but given the dew, we executed our plans pretty well,” said Kumar.
Man of the match Rahul said he was happy to get his form back after an ordinary start to this year’s IPL. “I didn’t start off the way I wanted to in the first couple of games. I am just enjoying my batting and happy to end up on the winning side,” Rahul said.