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IPL 2024: 'Learnt from PBKS bowlers to take pace off the ball, and it worked', reveals Coetzee

IANS | April 19, 2024 05:02 PM

MULLANPUR: Fast-bowler Gerald Coetzee, who finished with figures of 3-32 and play a starring role in Mumbai Indians edging Punjab Kings by nine runs in a thrilling IPL 2024 match, said he learnt from the hosts’ bowling line-up about the strategy to take the pace off the ball, which worked well at the end.

Coetzee took out Prabhsimran Singh and Liam Livingstone in power-play, before taking out a rampaging Ashutosh Sharma in the fag end of the innings to seal MI’s win. “I think we realised from their innings and the mistakes we made in our innings that you had to use the big boundary.”

“They did well with taking pace off, which was quite hard. So, I think we just really learnt from their innings. We adapted our plans, and I think it worked. It's a big boundary, and he didn't hit it too badly. It was just some pace off on a big boundary, " said Coetzee in the post-match press conference.

Speaking about bowling to Ashutosh, who made a 25-ball 61 and the plan to take him out as he pulled straight to deep mid-wicket, Coetzee said, "He (Ashutosh) batted well. I mean, he brought it to us. So I think we just wanted to be clear tactically what we wanted to do. We executed really well to him in the back end to shut it down and win the game.

"But it was tense, as I think everyone saw. But it was just all tactical discussions. That (Ashutosh Sharma’s wicket) was a big one. We were pleased about that. I mean, he was cruising the game for them. So, it was a good wicket to get."

Coetzee has bowled mainly in middle and death overs for MI in IPL 2024, but the fast-bowler doesn’t have any complaints over his change in the role. “I have mostly bowled in the middle overs, and in my younger days, I bowled in the powerplay.”

"So, as a modern-day cricketer, you must be adaptive to whatever role you are given. I haven't bowled much in the powerplay, but I'm really enjoying it. I love the middle overs, and I've grown to love the death. As someone who likes wickets, it's prime time to take wickets."

Thursday’s nine-run win also means that MI, the five-time champions, are now at seventh place in the points table, though they are still in the bottom half. They will next face top-ranked Rajasthan Royals at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur on Monday evening.

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