NEW DELHI: Rajasthan Royals pacer Chetan Sakariya lauded Director of Cricket Kumar Sangakkara and captain Sanju Samson for boosting his confidence on his Indian Premier League (IPL) debut against Punjab Kings.
In his debut game, Sakariya returned with the impressive figures of 3-31 in his four overs even when Punjab Kings posted 221. The youngster managed to take the wickets of KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal, and Jhye Richardson.
"Sanga sir told me bowl according to your understanding and back yourself. If it lands on the right area the whole credit will go to you and if didn't work we will help you. The same thing Sanju bhai did, he gave me full freedom and said I will give you the field of your choice," the pacer said in a video posted by Royals' on their website.
"I got to know in the team meeting before the match that I will play in the next match. Since then I was trying to mentally prepare myself for the opportunity.
"When I was bowling the first ball, I felt the pressure but after that, I felt it is normal cricket. The wicket of KL Rahul was special for me as we saved a lot of runs by sending him back to the pavilion," he added.
When asked about the stunning diving catch he took of Nicholas Pooran, he said, "I remembered my coach's advice who told me to always be prepared for the dive and I implemented on that. The ball got stuck on the hand.
"We lost a hard-fought game so I don't consider this as a defeat. We will learn from here and rectify our mistakes in the next game. Sanju bhaiya showed his class as he is playing IPL for such a long time. It is very pleasing to watch him play. He times the ball very easily and effortlessly," he added.
Sakariya was picked up by Rajasthan Royals for Rs 1.2 crore in the players' auction held in February this year. In fact, Sakariya was a net bowler with the Virat Kohli-led franchise Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) last year.Rajasthan Royals will next take on Delhi Capitals at the Wankhede Stadium on Thursday.