RCB opener Devdutt Padikkal, who notched up his third IPL fifty in four games on Saturday, has revealed that it was skipper Virat Kohli who was constantly in his ears, asking him to push hard and keep batting. Padikkal did not quite take the team over the line, but his 63 handed RCB an easy win.
On a scorching hot day in Abu Dhabi, Rajasthan Royals, after winning the toss, battled their way to a score of 154, but despite the total barely being ‘par’, there was the feeling that the chasing side would find it handful. However, having already struck two fifties in his first three games, young Devdutt Padikkal made batting look easy, as he took the RR bowling on, from the word go. The 20-year-old brought out his flicks and tricks and scored his third fifty in four matches to establish himself as the finest young batsman of the tournament.
The conditions meant that he was struggling to get going towards the end, but speaking post-match, the left-hander revealed that skipper Kohli kept pushing him to take the team over the line. The youngster didn’t exactly do that, but emerged out of the innings a better player.
“It's a different feeling [batting with Kohli], I've watched him from home so much since I was young and to bat with him is an unreal feeling. He just kept pushing me. I was getting tired, cramping up, but he pushed me. He said I need to see the team through. That's how he bats and he was conveying that to me too,” Padikkal said post match.
Padikkal once again displayed immaculate maturity, as he scored a fine fifty. The knock included 7 boundaries, but a prominent feature was also his quick running, maturity and decision making. The Karnataka batter revealed that the secret of his success was just playing each ball according to the merit.
“I'm just playing on merit, watching as closely as I can and making a decision. It was hot, especially after fieldin for 20 overs it was difficult to bat. Not pinching myself anymore, maybe after the first innings I was, now it's just part of the job.”