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Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) skipper Eoin Morgan was delighted with the way Nitish Rana batted against the SunRisers Hyderabad and said that he played a match-winning knock for the side.

Rana and Rahul Tripathi’s knocks of 80 and 53 were backed by a spirited bowling performance as KKR triumphed over SRH by 10 runs here at the MA Chidambaram Stadium. KKR first posted a total of 187/6 in the allotted twenty overs and then the bowlers managed to restrict SRH to 177/5.

“I’m delighted for Nitish. Obviously, a match-winning innings today. The thing that impressed me the most about his innings was the method he used, played really aggressively and always took a positive option which really did set up our batting innings,” Morgan said while replying to an ANI query in a virtual press conference after the game.

When asked about the batting position of Dinesh Karthik after he smashed 22 off nine balls coming out at number six, Morgan said, “Dinesh is happy with where he is at the moment. We are in regular conversation with him being vice-captain and me being the captain. One of the many strengths within our squad and two of the most talented guys in the country opening the batting for us. Tripathi at three played beautifully and the middle-order we have is extremely versatile. When Dinesh plays like that or Russell plays in the way he can play, it is obviously the destructive batting unit that has potential to win matches.”

Seasoned spinner Harbhajan Singh just bowled one over in the game and Morgan said despite that he did not finish his spell he played a role by motivating players around him.

“It’s more to do with the match-ups. We analysed the opposition batsmen and him bowling the first over was a plan based on that. He created an opportunity, but unfortunately, the catch was dropped. The role he played from thereon was outstanding. He used his experience, spoke to the players, and lent his hand wherever needed. From the time he has arrived in the camp, he has shown more energy than anyone else. Hopefully, he can continue doing that and keep bowling beautifully the way he has been,” he said.

When asked about the challenges of the bubble life, England skipper said, “Everyone within the squad, backroom staff and coaches are aware of how tough the bubble life is and the challenges it presents. It’s tough at different stages and particularly when you aren’t playing. Working hard and waiting for an opportunity could be a challenge.

“Having been in that position myself, I think the mind is waiting for that opportunity and trying to manage how you spend your energies. Often, if you aren’t in a good headspace, then you don’t take the opportunity when it arrives. There are regular conversations going on about the players’ welfare at the moment,” he added. (ANI)