IPL 2021: RCB's Harshal Patel speaks about bowling at the death for his team

The pacer claimed a five-wicket haul in the opener against MI as RCB got their campaign off to a winning start.

Harshal Patel was traded by RCB from DC before this season began- PTI

Harshal Patel was told well in advance that he will be death overs' "pointsman" for Royal Challengers Bangalore, a role he played to perfection in the IPL opener against Mumbai Indians on Friday.

Harshal’s career-best 5 for 27 was one of the two match-winning performances for RCB with the other coming from AB de Villiers.

"When I was traded from Delhi Capitals, I was told what role I will play for the franchise,” the Haryana pacer said at the post-match press conference on Friday.

He was brilliant at the death and just like skipper Virat Kohli said, Harshal also knew that he is expected to perform the tough job for which he had planned meticulously.

“There were clear instructions that I will be bowling in the last two overs (he bowled 18th and 20th). That gave me a lot of clarity. It helped me prepare certain plans against batters and kept my preparations concise.”

Harshal said that change of pace and the slow yorkers have been his biggest strength.

“The ball started reversing at one stage. It was important to bowl the Yorkers and slower balls,” he said.

Simulating bowling yorkers

According to Harshal, he has been bowling those slower yorkers that got rid of Ishan Kishan and Marco Jansen, for almost two seasons now.

“Just that when you don’t get wickets of slow yorkers, people don’t tend to see that. I always had the yorker but earlier couldn’t take it into the game.

ALSO READ | Harshal Patel will be RCB's designated death bowler, says skipper Kohli

He did a lot of simulation of bowling yorkers during training session to get it right during the match.

“In the past 15-20 days, I was trying to put myself into situations.” Having played a lot of IPL cricket, he understands how situation can turn from good to bad.

"You always want to start well. I am in my 10th season and I know that how a season can quickly go from good to bad."

 

Lynn rues lack of sixth bowler in MI attack

Mumbai Indians opener Chris Lynn felt that his team perhaps missed a trick by not having a sixth bowling option against RCB.

“We missed a sixth bowler,” Lynn, who was the top scorer in the game with 49 off 35 balls said.

When asked why Hardik Pandya was not bowling, Lynn indicated that the all-rounder might be carrying a shoulder niggle apart from his workload management.

“I exactly don’ know perhaps he is carrying a shoulder niggle. Obviously when he bowls, he brings in a different dimension to our side. But I think it was more of a precautionary measure,” the Queenslander said.

MI couldn’t practice a couple of days after their wicketkeeping consultant Kiran More tested positive for COVID-19.

“Yes, it’s a tricky situation if a tall fast bowler is confined in his room for two days. But we can’t give that as an excuse,” he said.