Raipur, May 23: After being knocked out of the IPL following a six-wicket defeat against Royal Challengers Bangalore, Delhi Daredevils wicketkeeper-batsman Quinton De Kock praised the opposition's game plan which restricted them to a modest total of 138 runs.
"I think they built a lot of pressure on us, their spinners. Some good bowling changes from them. So it was hard to build a partnership from there because we were losing wickets," the 23-year-old South African cricketer said at the post match conference here last night.
De Kock scored 60 off 52 balls against RCB in yesterday's match at the Shaheed Veer Narayan Singh International Stadium. However, they lost the match by six wickets.
"We lost wickets at the wrong time. Couple of soft dismissals. I lost my wicket at the wrong time. But we could have come after that. We were under the pump. It could have gone either way though. If we had got 20 more runs, we could have got 160. They had good game plans and at the death, it was hard to finish off...they bowled well," he asserted.
On being asked about how IPL helped him to improve his game, he said, "I'm still learning. I always go out there, trying to do the best I can.. The tournament wasn't too bad. This is the most that I have played in the IPL for one season. I missed only one game."
"I have learnt how to play spin better. I haven't had many opportunities in T20 to play spin. I know now what the wickets are about and want to come back next year," he added.
De Kock also hailed the RCB's captain Virat Kohli who guided his team to the victory with his unbeaten 54 off 45 balls. Over Daredevils' strategy to try out for different combinations in the squad, he said, "We spoke about this at the beginning of the tournament. It was a collective thought as a team that we were going to play the XI that we thought that can take up to an opposing team with regards to their bowlers, spinners, because we had a lot of variety.
"We tried and mixed and matched to complement who we were playing against. It is good that we mixed up."
RCB's spinner Yazuvendra Chahal, who took three wickets of 32 runs in the crucial do-or-die match, said they had planned not to give too much room to the Daredevils batsmen.
"The ground is big and the wicket was a double-paced, so I and Iqqi (Iqbal Abdulla) had planned that we shouldn't be giving room to the batsmen.
"From the other end too, Chris Gayle picked up wickets...scoring runs turned hard for them because they were kept loosing wickets at regular intervals. Otherwise, I think 150-160 was a good score on this pitch," he said.
Over a query on his strategy while bowling, the leg-spinner said, "mostly when I bowl, I want the batsman to come and play in the front. The ground is big therefore it becomes hard to hit over the covers especially when the bowl is turning."
He added that his team's bowling has improved a lot in the second half of the game.