'Our effort in death overs was crucial'

Abu Nechim was the unlikely bowling hero for the Royal Challengers Bangalore against Chennai Super Kings on Sunday.

The Assam bowler sent down a miserly four overs (4-0-18-1) and brought up the winning runs when he slammed David Hussey for four with one needed off two balls. On a pitch where spinners from both sides had turn, Nechim’s disciplined bowling fetched him the deserved rewards.    

“In fact when we looked at the wicket yesterday (Saturday), we had discussed that it could be a slow wicket,” he pointed out.

“All we had planned was to restrict the opposition to as low a total as possible. We just tried to implement our plans and my strength is bowling wicket-to-wicket and that’s what I did besides slipping in a slow bouncer or a wide yorker. I just tried some variations,” he remarked.

Nechim felt the last four overs, in which RCB conceded just 21 runs, were critical to the outcome. “Mitchell (Starc) and I bowled really well in the last four overs. I think that was very crucial because we could restrict them to just a 130-plus total.”     

He admitted it wasn’t easy to bat on the wicket. “Initially it was not turning that much, it was rather skidding for the pacers. But it wasn’t easy to bat in the second innings. It had become slower and the ball was turning a lot. It looked a bit difficult for us but Gayle had a good partnership with Virat (Kohli) and then AB (de Villiers) and Yuvi pa (Yuvraj Singh) batted really well. We had the belief that if not AB then Yuvi will win it for us. Both did well, especially AB,” he said.

Asked what was going through his mind when he came to bat, Nechim said: “All the fielders were inside the circle and I was just thinking of stepping out and hitting the ball over the field if the ball was there to be hit or else take a single.”

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