Parthiv Patel, the man whose direct hit gave Royal Challengers Bangalore an improbable one-run win over Chennai Super Kings, said he was left quite surprised when Mahendra Singh Dhoni missed hitting the last ball of the cliffhanger. Patel wasn’t expecting a marauding Dhoni to miss Umesh Yadav’s slower delivery before his direct throw sealed it for the home team on Sunday night. Dhoni scored 24 off the first five balls of the final over before missing the last ball. A scramble for one run ended in Parthiv’s direct throw leaving Shardul Thakur short of his crease.
“We honestly wanted him (Dhoni) to hit through the off-side on the shorter side of the ground. If he had hit it on the leg-side, there were two runs because I don’t think the way he runs, there was any chance of stopping those two,” an elated Patel said at the post-match press conference. “So we wanted (Umesh) to bowl slower and outside the off-stump and surprisingly he missed it. I wasn’t expecting him to miss it but surprisingly he missed it,” he said.
Patel said if Dhoni is around then 70 to 80 runs in the last five overs is always gettable at the Chinnaswamy. “Playing in Bangalore or Mumbai, you know that 70 runs in the last five overs are gettable. You need at least have 80-90 runs to get in last five overs to defend. So, we wanted to squeeze him. “We wanted to bowl as many dot balls to him as possible and put pressure on other batsmen because everybody knows how MS is. He wanted the game to go down to last three-four overs and he almost won the game,” said Patel.
The wicketkeeper-batsman scored his second half-century of the season and said that coach Gary Kirsten’s advice of choosing the correct bowlers was key to his success. “Before the game started, I was talking to Gary and he said ‘you don’t have to worry of anything you need to choose your bowlers’ and that is exactly what I did,” said Patel. He is happy to open the batting as he can use the Powerplay overs to his advantage.
“Honestly, it is great to be playing in the opening slot with Virat and AB coming in at number three. Actually, I don’t have to do much. I try to make sure that I hit a couple of boundaries and try and rotate the strike. “You know, I have been working hard on my game. I have been there in Australia for a couple of months…I have been working hard and I am quite happy with the way I am batting,” he said.