Lynn: Uthappa is a class player

Chris Lynn lauded Kolkata Knight Riders teammate Robin Uthappa after he fired a quick 36 in KKR's six-wicket win over Royal Challengers Bangalore.

Chris Lynn sends one to the fence during his match-winning knock of 62 against Royal Challengers Bangalore on Sunday.   -  AFP

Chris Lynn struck a match-winning 62 as Kolkata Knight Riders registered a convincing six-wicket win over Royal Challengers Bangalore at the Chinnaswamy Stadium on Sunday. Chasing 176 to win, the flamboyant Australian batsman mixed caution with aggression to steer KKR to its fourth win of the season.

Asked if batting was easy, especially with the wicket being two-paced, Lynn said, "It was challenging but we had one player anchoring the innings from one end; guys like Robin Uthappa and Dinesh Karthik played useful knocks which were very important for us.

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"Obviously, the new ball was probably the easiest time to bat. It was handy having Sunny (Sunil Narine) at the other end taking the pressure off.

"It was important to not lose a wicket going into the little rain break. They had a couple of quality spinners and we saw the ball turning out there. We had to grind away at the start, it wasn't a typical T20 game with the ball flying around."

Lynn, who has amassed 248 runs from eight games at a strike-rate of 131.91 - average by his lofty standards - is yet to light up the IPL with the kind of big hits he's known for. And the 28-year-old opener reckons it's the injuries that prevented him from expressing himself.

Lynn has had a history of shoulder injuries, the latest being the one he incurred while fielding during Australia's T20 tri-series final victory against New Zealand earlier this year. That had put a question mark over his availability but Lynn recovered in time to play the IPL.

"It has not been as free-flowing as I normally like," he acknowledged before adding,"I'm coming on the back of a couple of injuries, so I haven't really hit the ground running. My body didn't allow that early on but it's coming good now; I'm starting to find a bit of momentum which is important going into the back end of the tournament.

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"To build a strike-rate of 200 is very challenging, the more time I spend in the middle, the quicker I'll get that. At the moment, I'm happy to finish not out and get the team home because that's what was needed."

About Robin Uthappa's 21-ball cameo - during which the former Karnataka batsman hit three boundaries and as many sixes - and how it tilted the scale in KKR's favour at a time when RCB was trying to claw its way back into the contest, Lynn said, "He's (Uthappa) a class player. He just goes out there and backs himself. It's important for someone to play that anchoring role throughout the innings, then someone chips in with a couple of boundaries and gets the momentum back."

Asked how Dinesh Karthik has adjusted to his new role qs KKR skipper, Lynn noted, "It's a new team for him (Karthik) as well. More importantly, we've gelled really well together very quickly. We are trying to help him as a leadership group. He has to keep wickets too, so he can't talk to the bowlers at the other end. It's important for me and Uthappa to step up and help him that way."

Lynn and Nitish Rana had put on 31 runs for the second wicket before the latter retired hurt owing to a dodgy lower back. Commenting on his fitness, Lynn said, "Nitish (Rana) got some treatment in the time-out. It's a pretty heavy schedule, so it does take a toll on the body. But he's young, so I'm sure he will bounce back. He should be back for the next game in Kolkata."

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