Coach Ray Jennings
Coach Ray Jennings

Sunday, March 14, 2010
The Challengers are ready for action
The first couple of games in the Indian Premier League 2010 have resulted in some special performances, and some surprise outcomes. Yusuf Pathan played one of the best twenty20 innings that I have ever seen, and he will rarely end up on the losing side if he churns out more performances like that. The Knight Riders shocked the Chargers in their opening match, and Ganguly and his boys will be geared up for their game against our team later today.

The mood is upbeat in the Royal Challengers camp, and the boys are keen to put in a special performance at the historic Eden Gardens. The Kolkata home crowd will be backing their team to the wire, and that’s something that the Challengers will have to deal with if the game gets close.

Eoin Morgan is extremely excited about his IPL debut, and has admitted that he has never played in front of a 53000 strong crowd. His batting is ideal for twenty20 cricket, and I hope he lives up to the expectations of everyone involved in the franchise.

Jacques Kallis has flown in after winning a domestic twenty20 trophy in South Africa, and he can’t wait to turn out in red later today. Kallis is enjoying the challenge of opening the batting in this form of the game, and he probably controls the innings better than any batsman in the shortest format. In addition, Kallis also offers us a new ball option, which plays in integral role in keeping the balance of our side.

As a coach, Anil Kumble is a dream to work with, as few captains have the ability to keep a team together with players from different backgrounds and levels of experience. Kumble is greatly looking forward to leading his red army at home, and will undoubtedly be an inspiring force as a leader and strike bowler, much like his efforts in South Africa.

The Knight Riders have finally broken their jinx of losses, and will go all out to beat us in front of their home fans. This is a big game for them, and the pressure will be on their captain to perform at home.

The action is nearing, and I can’t wait for the game to begin. Momentum is the key in a competition like this, and the Challengers are ready to hit the right notes first up.

Ray Jennings is the former coach of the South African National Team and current head coach of the Royal Challengers. He was talking to Dhruv Mullick
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