Mumbai, May 1: Calling Rahul Tewatia ‘The Chase Master’ will not be out of place, given that the hard-hitting hard-hitter has been putting down opposition late in the order.
On Saturday, the 28-year-old Gujarat Titans player once again came up with a punch that left rivals in tatters as he and David Miller smashed Royal Challengers bowlers into submission, scoring 43 ( 25 balls) and 39 (undefeated). 24 balls) respectively and revising the stiff target of 170 runs with three balls to spare.
Tewatia said that the secret behind his association with Miller was to simulate conditions in practice sessions.
“During our practice sessions, we talk about how to finish a game late and what we can plan for. Finishing the game in the middle with him is nice,” Tewatia said of his partnership with Miller.
Tewatia indicated that he identifies his technical flaws that could allow the opposing team’s bowlers to overtake him and continues to work on improvements until he becomes a well-rounded player.
“I had improved my game off the stump quite a bit since the start of the IPL and hit quite a few shots. Because the bowlers had started planning and keeping the field off the stump, I thought if I could hit my shots into the gap, I can put limits there too. Then I could open up the game on both sides,” Tewatia said.
“You have to play pre-planned shots in the death overs, but I certainly see the pitch. But in the end, you just have to see the ball and hit it. So I try to hit it offside if it’s off the pitch.” outside the stump. If it’s on the leg stump, that’s my area, so I shouldn’t miss it,” he explained.
Tewatia also pointed out that the trick to acting in critical situations is to harness nervous energy and not succumb to it.
“I can’t say I’m cool, I just look cool. But inside, there’s a lot going on in my mind: when do I start executing what I’ve planned, which bowler should I take a chance on. I think about a lot of things and follow the plans I have set after that thought.” Captain Hardik Pandya also praised Tewatia, saying: “The kind of players we have finishing the job for us… somebody like Tewatia, Rashid (Khan), Miller too… the way they are hitting, it gives me confidence that even our 8, 9, 10 can come and win the game.” “It’s important to keep that belief within you, that until you’re in the crease, you can do anything,” Tewatia added.
Pandya added that the key to staying in a game is to always stay on top of the situation and not leave everything to the last minute.
“We try to make sure we always keep the game in check, making sure we’re right there in the game,” Pandya said of how the chase was built. “Obviously a lot of games where the opposition was on top of us, but we threw the game our way and ended up winning that game. But overall, our plan is to make sure we stay in death as little as possible.” But obviously, if you lose a couple of wickets in the middle, it’s always going to happen that the run rate will go up.”