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IPL 2018 | Ashish Nehra highlights the importance of bowlers in IPL

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IPL 2018 | Ashish Nehra highlights the importance of bowlers in IPL

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SportsCafe Desk


Ashish Nehra has claimed that bowlers have equal importance as the batsmen and without their contribution, a team can’t win matches in the IPL. Nehra, who joined Royal Challengers Bangalore as bowling coach, has also hoped that in the upcoming season, the side will deliver a good performance.

Nehra bid adieu to international cricket in November last year and played his final competitive game, a T20I match against New Zealand, at his home ground of Feroz Shah Kotla in New Delhi. Despite his retirement from the cricketing world, he will be a part of the upcoming Indian Premier League on RCB’s coaching staff and will handle the bowling department. The 38-year-old, who himself played 88 IPL games claiming 105 wickets at the economy rate of 7.83, admitted that the shortest format of the game is harsh for the bowlers but also claimed that they have the ability to emerge as the match winners.

"But in terms of cricketing contribution, I feel bowlers have an equal role to play, especially at a venue like Bangalore or Mumbai, where everybody knows wicket is going to be a belter. Be it Tests, ODIs or T20s, bowlers have to do well to win the match. You can't win a Test match by scoring a 1,000 runs. You will have to take 20 wickets to win it," Nehra told TOI.

"As a batter even if you don't score for five-six innings, and then you score a 120-ball 40 or a 130-ball 50, it is more highlighted. But it is other way round for a bowler. You might pick three wickets in four overs giving away 25 runs, it may go unnoticed. But if you give 60 runs in four overs, it will get highlighted."

The Bangalore-based franchise is considered as one of the best team due to their batting line-up that includes the likes of Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers and Quinton de Kock while fielding all-rounders such as Washinton Sundar, Chris Woakes and Nathan Coulter-Nile. Nehra, along with Gary Kirsten, will look after the RCB team and the former Indian pacer has claimed that his job would be more of managing team’s bowlers than teaching them about bowling.

"It is a new beginning for me. Everybody knows that how big a franchisee RCB has been. They have reached final three times, but couldn't cross the last hurdle so hoping for a good season. It will be more of a man-management thing for me, as I don't want to use the word coaching for my job at this stage. I see coaching from a player's point of view. I was playing till three-four months ago, so whatever I wanted from a coach, I will try to give it to my players," Nehra said.

"I can't and don't want to change anybody's game in the two-three months. I just want to change their frame of mind if there is a need for it. All my bowlers know how to bowl, but my job would be to tell them what to bowl when."

For the 11th season of the tournament, the team retained Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers, and Sarfaraz Khan before going into the auction. In IPL 2018, the team will get the services of the bowlers like Umesh Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Washington Sundar, Mohammed Siraj, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Tim Southee, Navdeep Saini, and Murugan Ashwin. Nehra played 27 T20I for India bagging 34 wickets at an average of 22.29 and the economy rate of 7.73 and during that time he played along with those players who will be seeking guidance from him in the upcoming T20 league.

"Although I have played with most of the players, I will start getting to know them better when we meet at the camp."

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