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Ultra-aggressive cricket transformed T20s: Justin Langer | Cricket News

NEW DELHI: The shortest format has been revolutionized by ultra-aggressive cricket, particularly in the powerplay, but head coach Justin Langer of the Lucknow Super Giants says it will be interesting to watch if the players can carry it over to the forthcoming T20 World Cup in the Americas.
IPL teams have scored 200 or more points 37 times already this season, but LSG has only done it once, last month against Chennai Super Kings, and Langer acknowledged that they had had difficulties in the powerplay.
“The Lucknow wicket has been a real contest between bat and ball whereas a lot in this tournament has been very one sided towards the bat. So that’s certainly, we haven’t capitalised in our powerplay like some of the other teams have,” Langer said after LSG lost by 19 runs to Delhi Capitals here on Tuesday night.
“…it’s been absolutely amazing watching some of these powerplays. It’s almost transformed the game. And whether people can continue to do this and whether they can do it during the World Cup, time will tell. But it’s certainly been ultra aggressive cricket.”
While DC was defending 209, they had gotten LSG to 71 for 5, but Arshad Khan, the pace all-rounder, gave them a serious fright when he hammered an undefeated 58 off of 33 balls, and the hosts retained their composure to restrict the visitors to 189 for 9.
“I think Arshad is a very good cricketer. You saw that he swung the ball early. He’s a good fieldsman and to be able to bat like that, he’s a very good package,” Langer said.
“I’ve thought the whole way through watching this tournament that he’s got huge potential and he showed some of that tonight. So when he becomes more consistent, particularly with his bowling, he could be a real handful and a very, very good all-around cricketer.”
For DC, Tristan Stubbs was sensational as he smashed a 25-ball 57 and then returned to take a wicket.
“I think Tristan Stubbs, that wicket was important obviously. We tried (Deepak) Hooda when the two left-handers were in and he got a wicket for us two games ago, he didn’t get one this game, whereas Stubbs did,” Langer said.
“So I thought if we had been a little more intelligent with our batting today, that was a chaseable score on this wicket. He’s (Stubbs) a very good cricketer. I’ve been seeing the power plays in the first six, but we’re also seeing the way some of these teams are finishing off, and I think Stubbs is an outstanding cricketer.”
Talking about the focus on match-ups these days, Langer said: “There’s so much data these days, so when you do your analysis leading into every game and what often happens traditionally is left-handers don’t have as much impact on the game against off-spin when the ball’s spinning away.
“You saw Bishy (Ravi Bishnoi) bowled beautifully when they’re spinning away, whereas when the ball’s spinning back into the left-hander or the off-spin is spinning back into the right-hander, it tends to be more in the arc to be hitting some of these sixes.
“So generally the thinking is that the ball that’s turning away from the batsman, left or right, is the way that most teams tend to match it up. Often when a wicket quickly falls, you look to get an off spinner on … and the truth is, there’s not too many Ravi Ashwins or Nathan Lyons in the world. So it’s a specialist role, that’s why often part-timers are used.”
All Indian bowlers are doing good job: Amre
Even though they lost a few important players, DC finished strong, and assistant coach Pravin Amre gave thanks to the Indian bowlers and backup players for their performance.
“It’s a new team, I look personally at many positives. As a find, Jake, Stubbs, Porel are good finds for us and even Rasik. I think last four games, he really contributed well and as an Indian, bowling in a death, I think that’s a specialist job. He backed himself very well,” he said.
“So I think last four or five games, all Indian bowlers are doing good job. I think that was very important for us, like the way Khaleel bowled, Mukesh bowled, Ishant bowled, I think that was very positive for us as a franchise.
“In IPL, you have to expect the unexpected. Harry Brooks was not there, then (Mitchell) Marsh had to go, also (David) Warner got injured. So auction table team was not playing but the back-up players came and delivered. To finish at number five, I think that’s a special achievement.”
(With PTI inputs)

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