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IPL 2022 – RR vs GT – Hardik a ‘high profile guy in India, but he’s been incredibly humble’

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Gary Kirsten: “[On Hardik, the captain] Fantastic. He’s a high profile guy in India, but he’s been incredibly humble. Wants to learn as a leader. Especially in IPL and in India, he wants to help youngsters. He’s come in with real responsibility, very different to see him in other IPLs. He’s batted beautiful. [On the overall win] Really chuffed for the guys. Great for Ashish and Vikram [Solanki] as well. Brand new franchise, to put a team together and get guys performing – amazing. [Team composition at auction] Good balance, good depth but most importantly have players who can play different ways. With Ashish we have learnt you need to have guys who are versatile, and we have that at No. 4, 5, 6. [Many players standing up] We got energy from it. We have a great bowling effort. In the end we went with a bowler strong and a batter light. Sai Kishore came in with five games to go as a left-arm spinner. I love working with Ashish there, he’s very strong tactically, putting gameplans together on the fly is not easy with so many variables. That’s been fun, but what I’ve enjoyed is the responsibility players have taken to close games out. [Home crowd] Hundred thousand people in the stadium is amazing. We trained here pre-season and it was echoing because it was empty.

Lockie Ferguson: “Two losses and finally a win. Couldn’t be more proud of the boys how they bowled. Led by Hardik, in particular, tonight.”

David Miller: It’s been a phenomenal journey. Finishing at the back end was pretty special and being there in the moment. It has been a collective effort, everyone’s stuck their hand up in key moments. One of the best rides I’ve ever had. [Hardik the skipper] Pretty much what Wadey said. Pretty much relaxed environment. It has led from Ashish Nehra and Hardik. Hardik has gotten better and better as the season has gone on. He’s tactically been really good, led with both bat and ball. [Best season of IPL?] Definitely the best one….we champions.”

Matthew Wade: “We’ve had a relaxed environment. Haven’t relied on one person too much even though Davey, Rashid and Hardik have had terrific seasons. It’s been a really family atmosphere, Ashish has created that. Everyone gets plenty of training time, he takes care of that. Everyone feels welcome and you can see the performances.”

Wriddhiman Saha “This season some people said we didn’t make a good team so we have proved everyone wrong. Feels good to win. Mohammed Shami got a wicket off the first ball of the season for us. We got momentum from there. So he has been outstanding through the season. Everyone has performed. “

Mohammed Shami: “I know Saha for 20 years. We know each other very well. Everyone knows his ability, he just needed a chance.”

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