BANGALORE: Kolkata Knight Riders skipper Gautam Gambhir on Monday said the ‘master move’ of picking quality bowlers, instead of buying big batting names during February auction helped the team to pocket its second Indian Premier League title.
Asked to choose between the title wins of 2012 and this season, Gambhir said this was a very special one because after the first seven games people had written them off. But nine win on the trot mirrored the strong character of the team and the players.
“It is difficult to compare the two wins, but I feel especially after the first seven games a lot of people may not have given us a chance of playing the finals,” he said.
Gambhir further said, “Nine [wins] in a row says a lot about the character of the team and the individuals. Halfway through the tournament, we were sixth or seventh. So this is something very special, which will stay close to my heart.”
On Manish Pandey, who single-handedly won the finals with his 94 against Kings XI Punjab, Gambhir said a player’s worth is realized when he performs in crunch situations and that is the reason why we backed him.
“When we picked Pandey, we had a lot of faith and trust in him. He has delivered when it mattered the most. Not many franchises would have continued with him because he had struggled with his form. But we always felt he had the talent and fearlessness to go out and play this kind of an innings,” he said.
About himself, Gambhir said it had been a roller coaster ride for him this season, but after finishing the season with an IPL win, one cannot complain.
“It has been a roller coaster ride, but when you finish the season winning the IPL, you cannot complain. It is not about how you start the season, it is how you finish. The guys were desperate to turn it around after the first seven games and that is what strong individuals are all about,” he added.–PTI