The victory against Delhi DareDevils was obviously an important one for us because I think some doubts were beginning to creep in after our string of losses. We are both delighted and relieved with the win.
I have often thought that a last ball win can be more important than a convincing thumping because it shows that the winners possess the strength of character to hold their nerves in a challenging situation and can claw their way to the top.
So we are now back home in Chennai and as we see it now, five wins out of eight is not all that bad, though we do need to win our next two matches to have a really good shot at the semi-final spot.
Weve been playing pretty much on the trot of late and are up against another tough team on Saturday — Kings XI Punjab — who have been playing very good cricket.
Personally, I am happy that I could contribute to the team total after three false starts. The innings against Delhi did a lot to boost my confidence and I hope Ive truly switched onto the Twenty20 mode now!
It helped that the track was great to bat on whereas the Chennai pitch is slightly more bouncy and requires a little more adjustment. Also it was great to see the quality of cricket played by some of the youngsters in the side such as Vidyut, who really launched into the Delhi attack without really being in awe of the ikes of Glenn McGrath and Co.
Albie Morkel was also outstanding when our asking rate had risen to around nine an over. Albie came to the party and took 23 runs off the 14th over which was bowled by Virender Sehwag.
It was spectacular cricket — first ball heaved over mid-wicket for that huge six, the second hit straight back for another six, and the third smashed over the head of mid-wicket for a third. I think that over made the biggest difference in the end.
From experience, I know that it is often extremely difficult to turn a losing streak around, which is why our win on Thursday assumes added importance.
The only problem is that with all the consecutive playing and travelling, we are really looking forward to some rest and relaxation. But that desire shouldnt become too overriding because we need all our wits about us when we take on Punjab.
This tournament is still wide open, and we are still playing for everything we can get.