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KXIP a balanced side, says Mitch

Calcutta: The failure of their batsmen was more than made up for by their bowlers in the low-scoring win over Kolkata Knight Riders and Kings XI Punjab pace spearhead Mitchell Johnson says it has proved that his side is the most balanced in the ongoing IPL.

Punjab clinched a 23-run win after setting a target of 132 for KKR on Saturday to continue their unbeaten streak in the IPL.

“I remember sitting around with the Australian team on our tour to South Africa, watching the IPL auction. When it came to an end, I actually said that this seems like a very well-balanced and all-round side,” Johnson told iplt20.com.

“It seems to be going on that way for us at the moment. We’ve had some very good wins and Saturday’s was one of the better ones. On that Abu Dhabi wicket, I think we pretty much got a par score and it was always going to be tough batting second on it. We’ve been sticking to our guns and have been going really well,” he said.

Johnson, who was in top form during the Ashes last year, has been a slow-starter in the IPL but rediscovered some of the touch in Saturday’s match by grabbing a couple of wickets.

“Yes, I’ve started the tournament quite slow, coming back from my toe infection and it has taken me a few games to get into it.

“Probably the best I felt with my bowling was during the training yesterday; I felt like I am in my cricket mode again...That’s where I wanted to get to — bowling as aggressively as I was a few days ago,” he said.

Johnson also spoke about his strategy to deal with KKR skipper Gautam Gambhir, who has been woefully out of form.

“I have played a fair bit against him and I’ve always enjoyed bowling to him. If you get the ball to move away from him just a little bit, you’re in the game,” he said.