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IPL 2024 | "It is really amazing what he did": Pietersen heap praise on Narine

Updated on: 27 May,2024 03:36 PM IST  |  Mumbai
mid-day online correspondent |

Featuring 15 IPL 2024 matches, Sunil Narine accumulated 488 runs with the willow. He also has one century and three half-centuries to his name. Former England cricketer Kevin Pietersen expressed his views by saying, "It is amazing, it really is amazing what he did, because I was one of the most vocal critics at the start of the tournament"

IPL 2024 |

Kevin Pietersen (Pic: File Pic)

The Kolkata Knight Riders defeated Sunrisers Hyderabad in the finals of the IPL 2024 at the MA Chidambaram Stadium. KKR successfully chased the target of 114 runs in 10.3 overs to lift the Indian Premier League title for the third time.

Star all-rounder Sunil Narine played a crucial role for KKR in their IPL 2024 campaign. Following his performances, former England cricketer Kevin Pietersen expressed his views saying, "It is amazing, it is really amazing what he did, because I was one of the most vocal critics at the start of the tournament, saying I didn't like Sunil Narine at the top of the order due to his inconsistency. He typically would hit a six and then get out, disrupting the momentum. However, this season, especially over the last couple of months, he has been consistent. He’s thought like a batter, batted like a batter, and got the runs of a batter. He has averaged more than many batters and his strike rate has been phenomenal. He’s played both sides of the wicket exceptionally well. And, of course, we don't need to say much about his bowling—he is an out-and-out superstar. His ability to change his action and still produce such impressive numbers is quite something. He is the heart and soul of this outfit, isn't he?”

Also Read: IPL 2024: Rinku Singh sets sights beyond, confidently envisions T20 World Cup triumph

Featuring 15 IPL 2024 matches, Sunil Narine accumulated 488 runs with the willow. He also has one century and three half-centuries to his name. Former Australian cricketer Matthew Hayden praised Narine. He said, “All I heard from Kevin Pietersen in summary was, I was wrong about Sunil Narine. I mean, that's what we're designed to do as former players. We have to call it as we see it. It's as simple as that, but what you'll see about Kevin and all of us, is that when we're wrong, we love to see players prove themselves right. Absolutely. And that's exactly what Sunil Narine’s done this IPL. He's been amazing. As KP said, he has played as a genuine batter. He's thought like a batter, and even in the short time tonight, when you think about it, he got chased a bit early by Pat Cummins and put him out of the stand. But even one six tonight shows that intent, that he's still there and he's still the best player.”

Having an upset start to the league and continuously being criticized for the amount he was roped in for KKR, Mitchell Starc proved his worth during the qualifier one and in the finals of the cash-rich league. Expressing his thoughts on Starc's performance in the finals against SRH, he said, "The moment that ball bowled to Abhishek Sharma came out of Mitchell Starc's hands, it was game over. It was destined to be the best ball of the IPL—an absolute peach at a time when it was so important. We all talked about how crucial the power play would be for winning this IPL final and this tournament. And after that ball from Mitchell Starc, it just meant that KKR were on a roll."

Speaking exclusively on Star Sports Cricket Live, former England cricketer Kevin Pietersen talked about Mitchell Starc's performance in the final as well as in the last two weeks of the tournament. "There are two schools of thought. You come to a ground, think about runs on the board, and aim for 180–200 runs. Then there is another school of thought that focuses on the 11 of us taking on those two in-form players. Because you can't really lose the game when you are out there as a collective fielding unit. And you saw that with KKR. Mitchell Starc was averaging around 136-137 kmph during the majority of the season. But in the last two weeks, he has gone above 140 kmph, and that is his average. He is bowling fast. We never saw him swing the ball for the first seven, maybe even eight, weeks of this tournament. In the last few weeks, he has got his wrist in a good place and started to swing the ball back"

Speaking exclusively on Star Sports Cricket Live, former Indian cricketer Ambati Rayudu praised Shreyas Iyer for his captaincy in the tournament. "Shreyas Iyer has been tremendous in terms of leading KKR, and we should give him a lot of credit. He was not in the best of forms with the bat, but still, the way he has led the team, the way he has used his resources, is commendable. It is a great credit to all the young Indians who have played in the KKR team, who really stood up with stalwarts like Narine, Russell, and Starc, and also contributed their share to the team's win. That is exactly how teams win the IPL, and we have seen this over the years. It is not the orange cap that wins you the IPL, But it is the contributions from 4 batters or 5 batters, These 300 runs each Or 400 runs each. That is what gets you to the finals. And that is where you need that clarity of thought. And the composure to play in the finals. Great credit to their support staff, Gautam Gambhir, Abhishek Nayar, and even Bharat Arun. You know, all these Indian coaches whom we seem to neglect sometimes and the kind of role that they have played in this IPL, especially using the resources. They had the same team for the previous three seasons, and this is the season where they really got them together, in terms of confidence, clarity, and freedom to really express themselves and play. So great credit to Gautam Gambhir, Shreyas Iyer, and all the support staff, and definitely all the players who have supported them as well. I think it is a great moment."

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