Morgan is tactically very clever – KKR mentor David Hussey

After Knight Riders’ win against Delhi Capitals in Qualifier 2, team mentor David Hussey was all praise for captain Eoin Morgan, opening batter Venkatesh Iyer and head coach Brendon McCullum for leading the resurgerance.

“I think the break in the halfway stage of the IPL definitely helped,” Hussey said at the post-match press conference. “But I truly believe that Morgan is captaining really well, he’s marshalling the troops, he’s tactically very clever. The bowling changes have been spot on. I think that’s contributed to our success this time around.

“Venkatesh Iyer is just a class player at the top. He is tall, a Stephen Fleming clone I believe. He has got a big future in the game.

“It’s unheard of what he [McCullum] has actually done here. It’s remarkable. We were seventh in the table and not playing great cricket, and he’s just turned it around. He has given everybody a fresh lease of life. He’s freshened up the place. Everybody’s happy, everybody’s smiling, and he should take a lot of credit. I know he won’t because he’s a very humble man, but he should take a lot of credit for what he has been able to accomplish in this part of the IPL.”

Hussey lauds Gill for his Temperament

According to the former Australian cricketer, it was Gill’s cover drive on the first ball of the chase that “soothed the nerves” in the dressing room.Speaking about Gill, Hussey said, “Everyone knows he [Gill] is going to be a ten-year veteran of Test match cricket, one-day cricket and T20 cricket for India,” Hussey said. “It’s just how he gets there and how quickly he gets there. What he does is he gives the whole batting group a lot of confidence the way he goes out there.

Just seeing him strike the first ball to the cover boundary soothed the nerves among the boys in the dressing room and the dugout. And everyone knows he’s just such a classy player, intelligent player, and I, for one, am just looking forward to seeing him grow as a cricketer and as a person.

Hussey talks about the Middle Order Struggles

Another big problem for Knight Riders could be the form of their middle-order batters. In 15 innings, Morgan has had ten single-digit dismissals, the most for any batter in a single IPL season. Dinesh Karthik, meanwhile, has scored only 91 runs in seven innings, at an average of 18.20 and a strike rate of 122.97, in the UAE phase. But Knight Riders are not losing their sleep over that.

“I’m not concerned because they’re all classy players,” Hussey said. “They know how to play. It’s just the difficult nature of the pitches that we’ve been playing on, it makes the middle-order players sort of stand out. They’re not getting their strike rates to 200, they have to knuckle down and maybe go at a strike rate of 110 to 120.
“But we’ve got full confidence in Morgan, Dinesh Karthik and Shakib going into the next game. They’ve done it countless times for their countries and in the IPL, so [we are] not concerned. We go to Dubai full of confidence and you just never know what’s gonna happen.”


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