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Woakes credits Coulter-Nile for setting up massive win


 Nathan Coulter-Nile delivered early strikes to set the tone for KKR's win
Nathan Coulter-Nile delivered early strikes to set the tone for KKR's win © AFP
After Kolkata Knight Riders were bowled out for 131 in the 27th match of IPL 2017, not many gave them a chance against a batting line-up consisting of Virat Kohli, Chris Gayle and AB de Villiers. However, with the conditions helping the bowlers, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Chris Woakes and Colin de Grandhomme came to the party to blow the opposition away.
They picked up three wickets apiece to star in Knight Riders' 82-run win over Royal Challengers Bangalore as the Virat Kohli-led side folded for 49 - the lowest total in IPL history.
Woakes credited Coulter-Nile, who picked up the key wickets of Kohli and de Villiers, for setting the tone for the win. "Watching him bowl, you could just tell that he was in good rhythm," he told iplt20.com on Sunday (April 23).
"He was hitting the pitch pretty hard and moving the ball well. He got the ball swinging. Getting Virat Kohli first ball showed you his confidence. From then on, I suppose you just try and put the ball in your right areas and hope for the wickets to come. It was a great opening spell of T20 bowling," he added.
Even with both teams getting all out, Coulter-Nile felt the pitch was a good one to bat on. "It was a tough wicket to bowl actually," he pointed out. "If you went a little bit off, you got punished. I went for 41 the last time against Gujarat Lions. You just got to be right on the money. Sometimes you go for runs and sometimes you got the wickets. It was fun to play there."
Woakes also revealed that the dressing room atmosphere was very low on energy after the first innings, after they folded for a below-par total. "We were obviously under par and we knew that. The heads were down in the dressing room at half-time.
"But, we came out and we had a chat and we said it was time to show some pride and fight. The captain wanted some intensity and the two opening bowlers did that. The rest of us backed it up from there on. I suppose until you go out there and don't pick wickets, you don't believe you can do it. Once we started getting wickets, all of a sudden you had belief."
Coulter-Nile's plans were simple - just bowl in the right areas and not look too far ahead - and he reaped rich rewards for sticking to it. "I didn't tell myself anything. I just wanted to bowl good balls. They (RCB batsmen) are very good players and you just don't want to go too ahead of yourself. It was just about bowling good balls, hoping there was a bit of something in the wicket in the second innings. We hoped they made a mistake, which they did," he said.
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