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Kings are still in the race: Miller

Kings XI Punjab haven’t been amongst the runs in Indian Premier League, barring one season where they finished runners-up in the 2014 edition. With the likes of David Miller, Glenn Maxwell, Hashim Amla, Darren Sammy, Martin Guptill and Eoin Morgan in the ranks, Kings XI Punjab have a batting unit capable of destroying the best of bowling attacks.

Kings are still in the race: Miller
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David Miller

Chennai

Hence it is natural to expect fireworks right from word go from any one of the Kings XI batsmen.  David Miller does not bother about the expectation. “I always try to get myself in first and then try to clear the ropes. But it doesn’t work out always as sometimes I must be on the money right from the word go. But once I get myself in, I try and accelerate,” Miller said. 

The dashing southpaw said it is difficult to prepare for situations where the asking rate shoots up, calling for drastic measures. “It is very tough to prepare. What I personally do is, I mentally focus on making my practice sessions as realistic as possible. And I always try to give myself some time upfront and then anything is possible,” Miller explained. 

With mentor Virender Sehwag on the sidelines, does it make life easy for Miller, as the former Indian player was equally dashing and destructive? “Well, not really. It is a bit different. He (Sehwag) has opened the batting and I am in the middle. It is tough for him to give me a clear advice on hitting in the middle overs. I have learnt the trade from other big hitters who I have chatted with around the world, who have been in my position and that’s how I take it,” the South African batsman noted. 

The Punjab outfit has had mixed luck in the tenth edition winning four and losing five of the nine matches they have played so far, but Miller isn’t writing his team’s chances off. “We have prepared well even last year. It was just that we couldn’t convert the half chances, the small opportunities that came our way and we missed. We have taken our chances, the players have stuck to their processes and plans, the slower balls have come out well, the batters have done well. We just need to trust the process that works and I don’t see why we cannot come out successful,” Miller added. 

Kiwi Marin Guptill has had a good IPL so far. Having played only two matches and scored 73 runs with one half-century knock,  Guptill credited the bonding in the team for his exploits. “I am just enjoying my stint. Everyone is welcoming and it just makes it very easy to fit in to the scheme of things,” Guptill noted.

The New Zealander who has missed out on almost three months of cricket to recover from an injury feels he had his moments in Test cricket and wants to get into the Test team eventually. “I have had moments. For me, getting into the Test team means I should keep scoring in the ODIs and when I go back and play for Auckland, I hope to guide them to as many wins as possible. Scoring runs is my sole focus now,” Guptill concluded.

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