Pollard and Rohit are probably the best T20 players ever: Ricky Ponting
Ricky Ponting feels that Pollard can chase any target if he remains unbeaten at the end whereas Rohit Sharma is more calculative with his batting.
Published - Apr 18, 2017 11:32 pm | Updated - Apr 18, 2017 11:32 pm
Former Mumbai Indians coach Ricky Ponting showered heaps of praise on skipper Rohit Sharma and Kieron Pollard, hailing them the best T20 players in the world. The 2-time IPL champions are currently ranked number two on the points table and have won the last four games on the bounce.
Kieron Pollard didn’t come into the tournament with much runs under his belt. Pollard failed to get runs in BBL, in which he plays for the Adelaide Strikers. His poor run continued when he turned out for West Indies against Pakistan and could only muster to 20 runs in 3 innings. Despite his poor run of form, Mumbai Indians had him in the XI straight away. He responded by hitting a match-winning 70 against RCB in Mumbai Indians fourth IPL game this year.
Coming in to bat when his team was tottering at 7/4, post his countryman Badree’s hattrick, Pollard steadied the ship by playing percentage cricket followed by the late flourish, which we often associate with Pollard. The Trinidadian followed it up with a quick fire 39 which was instrumental in achieving the target set my Gujarat Lions. The 29-year old now looks in fine form and is a crucial cog in the Mumbai Indians wheels.
“Personally I’ve never felt out of form. I’ve been hitting it well in the nets and these are the times you’ve to dig in”, said Pollard following his knock of 70 off 47 balls.
“I just thought these are situations when champions are made,” Pollard said. “I thought of that and struck to my strength, hit it down the ground.
“Many of my knocks have come under pressure. You like to contribute in these situations when the team is on the back foot. To win from this position is a great achievement.”
Rohit Sharma got back into some rhythm with an unbeaten 40 which came in 29 balls in his side’s 6-wicket win against Gujarat lions. The Mumbaikar struggled in the first four games making just 9 runs in the first four games.
“(Pollard and Rohit) are two of the best T20 players the game has probably ever seen,” Ponting told cricket.com.au last week, two days before Pollard’s heroics against RCB.
“The thing I’ve always said about Pollard is ‘it doesn’t matter how many you need, if he’s in at the end with three or four overs to go, you can still always win.
(In 2013) we had a game against the Sunrisers and I think we needed about 80-odd off the last five overs or so (the equation was 79 from six overs). Pollard was in and he got most of them all by himself. It was just incredible power hitting at the end.
He times his run really well, he identifies the bowlers he knows he can score heavily off and when he goes about doing that he can be unbelievably dangerous.”
Ponting compared Rohit Sharma with AB De Villiers saying that the former calculates his move.
“Whereas Rohit is a bit more calculated, a bit more classy, in the (AB) de Villiers mould. He scores all around the ground and makes batting look very, very simple.”
With both batters in some kind of form, the road to a possible third IPL title looks within the realms of possibility.