Professional cricketers have a way of putting perspective on issues those outside the ground may not have.
Professional cricketers have a way of putting perspective on issues those outside the ground may not have. After reviving Delhi Daredevils from the dead and carrying them to the edge of an outrageous win against the Gujarat Lions, South African all-rounder Chris Morris was almost nonchalant about the heart-bursting outcome.
“At the end of the day it was quite a good wicket and a serious game of cricket. Unfortunately we lost, which is quite upsetting but they played nicely and won,” he said after the Devils’ charge towards 173 beached itself at 171 at the Kotla here on Wednesday night.
“There was a lot of pressure. The runs were not coming. I had a chat with Rahul (Dravid) just before I went in to bat. I said to him, ‘if I’m going, I’ll go at it from ball one’. He said give yourself one or two.
“But it was obvious what we needed to do. I just played my natural game. If the ball is in my zone, I go after it, even if we needed say five an over. That’s just the way I play my game. It was quite simple what I needed to do — play some big shots and get some runs.”
Morris blasted his way to a 17-ball half-century and eventually finished on an unbeaten 82 from 32 balls. It was not good enough to save the day though his heroic knock certainly had spectators nailed to their seats and arguing volubly for hours afterwards.
“Probably yeah, this was my best innings in T20 cricket,” he admitted post-match. “I could have hit one straight first ball and looked like an absolute idiot. It is just one of those days to me when the ball came on to the middle right away. Today was my day and fortunately it worked for me. It is upsetting we lost though.”
Brendon McCullum and Dwayne Smith set up the Lions total with a powerful display up front, which was good enough to survive a later collapse. Could Delhi have done things a little differently
“Ah, we were bowling to two of the most destructive batters in world cricket. If those two get going, we saw what they can do. I think Baz batted beautifully. We gave away few too many loose balls, but you know, that’s the game of cricket.
“If you we could bowl six perfect balls every time, we would be legends. It was just one run.. Say if you could have run one harder, it could have been a different game.”
Delhi skipper Zaheer Khan was taken to the cleaners early on, and despite conceding a bagful of runs in his first two overs, came back for a third in Powerplay itself. Was that the right call, Morris was asked. “When Zaheer makes a decision, I back him. That guy is a genius. I mean that field he set for McCullum — Sanju dropped it though, but as soon as he hit it, I was like, ‘oh, six runs’, but when I looked again and saw Sanju there, I thought when exactly did Zak put him there.
“The way Zak’s brain works is brilliant. I could have been different for Zak. He went for four and the next ball was a dot ball and then Smith nicked it between the keeper and slip. So, when Zak makes a decision I back him up.”
And finally, on the team think tank. “That’s the genius of Rahul Dravid and Paddy Upton — the way they run the ship is. With Rahul and Paddy involved, they give you a lot of space to grow as a person. As a cricketer, that’s the time you grow as much as possible.
“There are not going to tell you not to do something or to do something. They give you something to think about. You use it or don’t use it, but they let you grow as a cricketer. They are brilliant together.”