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Johnson promises variety

Calcutta: Mitchell Johnson might be having a fantastic time for Australia over the last few months. His exploits in the Ashes Down Under and in the Tests versus South Africa have made him one of the two most feared fast bowlers in the world along with Dale Steyn.

Now, to replicate that success in IPL VII, Johnson feels adaptability will be key for him. The 32-year-old will spearhead a young pace attack of the Kings XI Punjab, who begin their campaign against two-time champions Chennai Super Kings, in Abu Dhabi, on Friday.

Speaking to a UAE-based daily, Johnson said he was ready to vary his approach as per the demands of the situation. “I will not be trying to blast every batsman off the pitch in my four overs. If there is a bit of swing, I will try to bowl the Test match length and move it away from the batsman, while my role will be different in the death overs,” he made it clear.

It’s still early days in the league and Johnson admitted he was still coming to terms with the team combination. “It’s a good, young team and I was quite impressed with Rishi Dhawan. We should be able to have a good tournament,” he emphasised.

A doubt or two surfaced about his availability in the IPL when a toe infection ruled him out of the World T20 that was held in Bangladesh. Cricket Australia (CA) giving the green light on his fitness in the first week of this month came as a relief for the Kings XI.

Pitches in the UAE tend to favour batsmen a little more, but Johnson doesn’t look to be too worried about it. “I have played a one-day tournament in the UAE before (against Pakistan) when matches finished late in the night.

“From what I recall, the wickets were pretty good to bat on and I am mentally prepared for similar conditions this time around,” Johnson said.