McCullum's dismissal was turning point, says Shukla

Kolkata's Laxmi Ratan Shukla says it was Brendon McCullum's wicket that turned the match around against Chennai Super Kings.

updated: April 30, 2008 17:52 IST
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Brendon McCullum's dismissal in the very third over was the turning point of the match, said Lakshmi Ratan Shukla after his team, Kolkata Knight Riders, lost to Chennai Super Kings by nine wickets in the Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 tournament here Saturday.

At the post-match press conference, Shukla felt it was a rather soft dismissal and came when McCullum was batting well.

The Kiwi opener mistimed a full-toss into the hands of Suresh Raina in the covers just as he was looking to cut loose.

"The pitch was fine, but we did not apply ourselves when we batted. And then, our bowlers also failed to provide us an early breakthrough that we were hoping for.

"However, we are not very perturbed by today's defeat. It can happen to any team. We had a bad day today, but I am sure we will bounce back. There is still a lot of cricket to be played in the tournament," he said.

Man of the Match Jacob Oram was understandably pleased with his three-wicket haul, but said he needed to bowl even better.

"In the two previous games, I bowled too short and wide. Today's performance was better, but am not very happy although I managed to get a few wickets today," Oram said.

The New Zealander added that he did not have any specific plans for McCullum, but merely tried to deny him easy hits by bowling tight.

Although Super Kings have won all their three matches so far, Oram said it was too early in the tournament to name any team as favourite.

"We need to continue performing in the same way in the rest of the tournament, but at this stage, you cannot tag any team as a favourite," he asserted.

On Mahendra Singh Dhoni's captaincy, Oram was all praise. "He is a very relaxed individual and does not allow pressure to creep into the dressing room."